The benefits of exercise are immense. We all know that a 20-minute walk every day brings tremendous advantages to our minds and bodies.
However, knowing its benefits is not enough to get most of us to exercise. With the load and rush in our everyday lives, it is too easy to overlook how exercise can actually help us cope and even more difficult to squeeze in time for it.
In this article, we are hoping to help you get started with even a few minutes of exercise…TODAY!
What is exercise and its benefits
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“Exercise is considered planned, structured and purposeful physical activity. The goal of exercise is to increase physical fitness”. (https://research.med.psu.edu)
Regular exercise has huge physical, mental and emotional benefits. Among its most known physical effects are:
- Lessening the risk of chronic diseases and physical disability
- Strengthening of immunity
- Losing excess/ maintaining weight
- Strengthening of muscles and bones
- Increasing energy levels.
Regular exercise also gives us better mental and emotional health. It reduces stress, anxiety, and depression. It also improves our brain function and memory and provides better rest and sleep.
These amazing changes overall lead to an improved quality of life.
Look for your ‘whys’
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We get it. You know that exercise is good for your health but you just can’t find the motivation and time to start. You are not alone. But like any other activity or endeavor that you’d partake in, you need to have the conscious realization of why you should do so.
Sound body, mind = your future…
“Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live (Jim Rohn)”
The reasons to start exercising are right in front of you.
Are you starting a family? Do you have young kids? Do you want to live long enough to see them grow as adults and meet your future grandchildren?
…Are you healthy? You must be living it! Isn’t it so convenient to not get sick? Would you like to continue in a sick-free future?
…Are you not in the best of health? Would you be willing to do the simplest exercise regimen (suitably recommended by your doctor) to make your days better?
…Are you successful in your career, your business? Are you just starting out? What are you doing to make sure your body is able to take your ventures forward?
…Are you struggling financially? Is your body strong enough to steer your life to a better future?
No matter what age, status, or place you are in, you will find many reasons POWERFUL enough to let you invest in your health through exercise.
Yes, exercise is an investment that you gain immensely from over a period of time. It is among the delayed gratification activities that lead to a healthier future and have a domino effect on the different aspects of your life.
Types of Exercises
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There are many types of exercises but the more important ones and which you can easily start with right away are:
- Aerobic exercise – speeds up your heart rate and breathing, is important for many body functions. It gives your heart and lungs a workout and increases endurance.
- Strength training – Strength training builds back the muscle mass that we lose as we age. It also stimulates bone growth, lowers blood sugar, assists with weight control, improves balance and posture, and reduces stress and pain in the lower back and joints.
- Stretching – Stretching helps maintain flexibility.
- Balance exercises – Improving your balance makes you feel steadier on your feet and helps prevent falls.
Exercise tips for the busy
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“You will never find time for anything. If you want time you must make it”. -Charles Buxton –
- Plan ahead. To make time for exercise, build your schedule around it. Make sure to block off a specific and non-negotiable time in your daily calendar.
- Commit. The idea behind finding your ‘whys’, is to commit to your exercise regimen once you have already started. Especially during hectic days where you have to dispense some tasks, your commitment (and the reasons behind it) will keep exercise in your daily list of must-dos.
- Squeeze in walks, runs, stretches into your errands or work.
- Start small and easy. Especially in the beginning, exercise can be short walks around your block or simple stretches like our 30-minute stretching guide which is very easy to follow and works for the whole body. Once your body and schedule are adjusted, you can gradually increase the amount of time and workout.
- Find an exercise partner/ group. If you find it hard to stick to exercising, an accountability partner or a fun group helps. Sharing goals, creating healthy challenges, enjoyable exercise activities will continue to get you motivated.
- Stick to what you enjoy. Some of us enjoy running while others are more into walking. Others are happy outdoors while some find comfort working out in the gym. Plan your exercise around your interests, hobbies, and what you enjoy doing.
- There are many apps available such as Down Dog for yoga, HIIT or Barre which help with your exercise routine and provide exercise regimens, as well as many habit tracking apps which help you track your time and progress.
Keep it simple.
The coronavirus pandemic has shown us that exercising can be free and simple. For many, it has also been a way to spend some time outdoors and relieve the stress around us.
Yes, the benefits of exercise are immense and are no secret. We just need to find the will and the reasons to get to it. Once we are convinced of the wonders that it will bring to our lives, we are bound to act and see its awesome results!