It is no secret that exercising is a way to improve your overall health. There are so many ways to get a great workout out in, but when it comes down to the overall benefits, do you really know what they are? What are the benefits of exercises?
The benefits of exercises include weight control, improved mood, increased energy, a decrease in health issues and chronic disease, the improvement of memory and brain health, skin and sleep improvement, a reduction in pain, and can be a source of fun
Exercising can be difficult to start initially, but once you start the process and see how it can change your mind and body, it becomes a habit that is hard to stop. Exercising can be tailored to the needs and abilities of any person and because of this, everyone is able to reap its benefits. Take a look below to find a long list of all the benefits that exercise offers, no matter who you are.
What are the Benefits of Exercises?
The great thing about exercising is that no matter what age you are, what your physical abilities are, or what your individual goals include, you are always going to reap some type of benefit from exercising. This general sentiment is great as a surface-level understanding, but it is important to know the detailed benefits of exercising not only to have a better knowledge of how this action impacts your body, but to also help motivate you for years to come.
Weight Control is Achieved
Weight loss and weight control will likely either rank as the top priority for many when it comes to exercising, or it will fall within the first five on the list of their exercise goals. This can certainly be a point of obsession, but at a healthy weight, weight loss and weight control are essential to maintaining a healthy body internally and externally. A proper diet is a huge contributing factor to weight control, but exercise falls right behind it.
Many people believe that to achieve weight control, they need to dedicate hours upon hours a week to achieve their weight loss goals in order to burn a larger amount of calories. However, exercises that increase your heart rate, even over a short period of time, will help to control your weight and will even lead to weight loss. Even simple changes like standing as you type out an email or taking the stairs can work towards weight management.
Mood is Improved
Exercise not only improves your physical state, but it can greatly affect your mental state. Through exercise, your mood can be stabilized as depression can decrease, anxiety can wean, and stress can dissipate at a faster and more effective rate. Through the natural means that your body provides, exercise promotes a decrease in hormones that can lead to depression, but also helps to release serotonin and norepinephrine.
Both of these are huge contributors to relieving feelings of depression as well as regulating stress and anxiety. More than this, exercise also helps to release dopamine and endorphins which aid in helping your mood to stabilize and take on more of a happy state. Extreme exercise does not have to be achieved to see these types of results, but simple active periods can greatly benefit your mental health.
Energy is Increased
Oftentimes, those with a decreased activity level find themselves in a position where they simply don’t have the energy to perform menial tasks or participate in low-level physical activity. For example, your nephew is over and he wants to go outside and swing, but you simply don’t have the energy to get up off the couch, nor the motivation to propel you. Therefore, you choose to stay inside and watch a movie instead.
There is nothing wrong with taking things easy from time to time, but exercising gives your body the energy you need to actively participate in life. Exercise helps to strengthen your muscles while building your endurance through the invigorating of oxygen to your tissues. This happens by increasing the amount of blood your heart pumps and thus, delivers to the rest of your body, giving you more energy to do the things you want.
The Risk of Health Conditions and Chronic Disease is Lessened
Chronic disease is something that can actually be avoided by a healthy amount of exercise. Contrary to popular belief, chronic diseases are not only brought on through genetic history, but they can rear their ugly head due to a lack of regular exercise. Long gone are the days of being able to fully blame your mother or father’s side for your health issues, and come have the days of being able to take your health into your own hands.
Regular exercise has been proven to improve insulin sensitivity, cardiovascular fitness and overall body composition, and well as decrease blood pressure and blood fat levels. All of these aspects are essential to the maintenance of your internal health and can help to lessen your chances of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, arthritis, metabolic syndrome, and even various types of cancer.
Memory and Brain Health are Improved
You now know that exercise is not simply for those who want a better physical body, but it is something that is an absolute necessity to keeping you internally fit as well. Beyond exercise’s ability to improve your mood, energy levels, and keep disease at bay, exercising is also an incredible tool to keep your memory strong and maintain brain health. This means fewer foggy thoughts through the production of hormones that promote the growth of brain cells.
Regular physical activity can actually change the way that your brain is structured and how it functions. For older adults especially, exercise can be a huge aid in maintaining their memory and helping to keep it strong, as the hippocampus of the brain is really targeted through exercising. Even more, exercising can help to reduce major changes in the brain that have been found to be the leading cause of the development of Alzheimer’s.
Skin Can Improve
Going back to the effects of exercise on your physical state, this is a benefit that many people don’t know exists: exercising can improve the appearance of your skin. How would this be possible, as when you exercise, you sweat, and doesn’t that clog your pores? The health of your skin goes beyond clogged pores though and through exercising, you are able to decrease the amount of oxidative stress in your body.
Oxidative stress finds its way into your body when free radicals cause damage to your cells due to your body’s antioxidant defense not repairing these cells properly. To help combat this, your body needs antioxidants to step in and start to repair those cells. Through exercise, your body is able to increase its production of natural antioxidants which work to repair and protect cells, leading to improved skin.
Pain Can be Reduced
It may sound like an oxymoron to say that pain can be reduced through something that causes your body to push its limits, but the fact is, exercise is an incredible way to reduce different types of body pain you may experience. This does not mean that you need to engage in the most vigorous exercise you can imagine, but simply participate in exercises that get your body moving, your heart rate increased, and your blood pumping.
By participating in regular, moderate exercise, those who experience chronic pain get dormant muscles working again which can help to aid in their overall strength. Therefore pain can be reduced in areas like the lower back and neck, can aid in relieving shoulder disorders, and can help to relax other various muscle groups. Getting moving essentially helps to turn your body into a well-oiled machine which aids in its ability to function well.
Sleep Can Improve
If you find that you are having trouble sleeping and your days are spent working at a computer, then you come home for dinner and relax on the couch until bedtime, it may be due to an inactive lifestyle. No matter how exhausted you are at the end of a long day, if you have not been active, your body has a hard time falling asleep, and when it does, has difficulty getting into a deep, restorative sleep.
During exercise, your temperature is increased, and this increase in body temperature aids in its decrease when you are sleeping, which promotes a cooler and more comfortable sleep. Also, after you exercise, your body sees that there is a need to recuperate. This recuperation occurs while you sleep, which helps to promote a deeper, more restorative sleep than if you were to spend the day without completing any type of exercise.
Exercising can be Fun
Exercising does not have to be a dull picture of spending an hour on a treadmill as you lightly jog while watching a talk show host chat about the latest and greatest foot massager. Exercising can be a huge source of fun and enjoyment if you make the effort to find out what you like, but also what works best for your body. There are so many different types of exercises out there, anyone can find one that resonates with them.
From biking, to pilates, to hot yoga, to HIIT, to aerobics, to swimming, to running, to Crossfit, to powerlifting – the list could go on and on – there is a form of exercise that will keep you wanting to come back for more. Find exercises that you love, and even more, do them with someone who makes the action fun! Exercising does not have to be a solitary journey and can be made so much better when surrounded by those who motivate you well.