If you frequently think "I should get some exercise today” or “Time to hit the gym,” you’re right! Make today the day that you start a more active lifestyle. The benefits of exercise go far beyond simply shedding unwanted weight and fitting back into your old jeans. Exercise helps improve sleep quality and energy level and can also help boost your mood and memory. That’s already an awesome reason to exercise, but there are even more additional benefits to exercise that you’re probably not aware of.
Take a look at these seven main benefits of amping up your exercise routine:
1. Boost your happiness levels
Even though you may be slow at getting regular exercise, physical activity helps improve your mood in many ways. Exercise releases endorphins as well as a huge variety of brain chemicals such as dopamine, adrenaline, and endocannabinoids. These chemicals are all associated with feelings of happiness and confidence and can help reduce anxiety and stress.
2. Naturally reduce your risk of heart disease
Pairing a healthy diet with regular exercise might be able to not only prevent heart disease, but also reduce other risk factors. Your heart is a muscle, so a regular exercise routine will give you a “workout” for your heart muscle, keeping your arteries and blood vessels more flexible. This can improve blood flow and help maintain healthy blood pressure.
3. Improve your energy levels
When you regularly get exercise, your heart and lung health also improves, making it easier for your heart to circulate oxygen throughout your body. This naturally gives you more energy to complete your day-to-day routine. In addition, when you’re physically fit, your daily tasks will be less draining, giving you refreshing, consistent energy through the day and also help you avoid a mid-day brain fog episode.
4. Sleep soundly through the night
Did you know that as little as 10 minutes of aerobic exercise (such as walking, jogging, or cycling) can dramatically improve the quality of your sleep? This benefit is noticeable when aerobic exercise is done regularly. People who habitually exercise are able to reduce their stress and are able to fall asleep more easily and quickly. In fact, a healthy exercise routine might even help you avoid sleep disorders such as sleep apnea and restless leg syndrome. Do you want to sleep better? OK, time to get moving!
5. Jog your memory
It might sound unusual, but physical exercise can actually help your brain stay sharp as a tack. Exercise can facilitate the circulation of oxygen to your brain and reduce the risk of disorders that can lead to memory loss. Remember those chemicals that are released by your brain when you exercise? They improve your mood as well as your memory!
6. Increase your self-confidence
Self-esteem is often tied to how you view yourself and your body. Regular exercise can help build confidence and improve your body image by helping your drop unwanted weight and trim up your muscles. You can feel better about the way you look at yourself if you maintain a regular exercise routine – just remember that changes to your body take time, so stick with your routine even if it doesn’t seem to work right away!
7. Amp up your immune system
You know that a healthy diet can help improve your immunity, but exercise can contribute to a healthy immune system as well. Good circulation is key in allowing the cells and antibodies of your immune system to move around your body to do their job. In addition, your body can become stronger with regular exercise. This means that you may not feel as fatigued if you do happen to get sick.
The Bottom Line
Whether you choose to walk, run, cycle, kickbox, or lift weights, incorporating regular exercise into your daily routine can improve many aspects of your life. You don’t need to become a gym buff or bodybuilder to experience these benefits, you just need 30 – 45 minutes to get your heart rate up and your blood pumping at least 5 days each week. OK, let's go!