Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Benefits of Regular Exercise

Over the years, our society has become sedentary. Technological advances can make life easier and more convenient, but they can also be a double-edged sword. The unintended by-products of decreased activity include obesity, muscle loss, and poor health. As a result, it is beneficial to look for ways to increase our physical activity. One of the best ways to do this is to exercise regularly.

The benefits of being physically active are plentiful. Here are 40 good reasons to exercise.

1. Regular exercise reduces your risk of developing heart disease or a stroke.
2. Improves your likelihood of survival from a heart attack with quicker recovery. 
3.   Reduces the risk of developing high blood pressure.
4.   Helps control blood pressure in people with hypertension.
5.   Improves coronary circulation and makes your heart a more efficient pump.
6.   Lowers your resting heart rate, which means less wear and tear on your heart.
7.   Reduces the viscosity of your blood and increases the blood plasma volume.
8.   Increases circulating levels of HDL cholesterol (the good kind) in your blood.
9.   Increases maximal oxygen uptake, which allows greater cardiovascular efficiency.
10. Increases your anaerobic threshold, allowing you to work or exercise longer at a higher intensity, with a lower amount of lactic acid buildup.
11. Improves your ability to recover from physical exertion faster.
12. Reduces your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
13. Reduces the risk of developing colon, breast, and prostate cancer.
14. Helps you to burn excess calories and lose weight – especially fat tissue.
15. Improves your body’s ability to utilize fat as a fuel source during physical activity.
16. Increases the density and strength of bones and prevents osteoporosis.
17. Strengthens your tendons, ligaments, and connective tissue.
18. Improves your balance and coordination.
19. Maintains and improves your joint flexibility.
20. Provides protection against injuries.
21. Reduces your likelihood of developing low-back problems.
22. Protects against “creeping obesity” (the slow and steady weight gain that occurs as you age).
23. Reduces abdominal obesity, which is a significant health-risk factor.
24. Helps to maintain weight loss and improve your metabolism.
25. Allows you to consume greater quantities of food and still maintain a caloric balance.
26. Increases your muscle strength and endurance.
27. Helps to slow the loss of muscle tissue that occurs naturally with aging.
28. Gives you more energy during the day and for unexpected emergencies.
29. Increases your productivity at work.
30. Reduces workdays missed due to illness and injury.
31. Reduces medical and health care expenses.
32. Improves the functioning of your immune system.
33. Reduces anxiety levels and helps you relax.
34. Helps you to manage stress more effectively.
35. Helps to alleviate depression.
36. Helps you get to sleep easier and sleep better.
37. Improves athletic conditioning and performance.
38. Improves your body composition by increasing your lean body mass.
39. Improves your posture and physical appearance.
40. Improves your self-esteem.

You would have to be crazy to not to want these benefits. Develop the habit of increasing your physical activity by exercising 4-6 times per week if you are not already doing so.


Raymond said...

Its a good list but when 'you say you must be crazy' they are!
Otherwise most developed nations wouldn't be heading towards obesity.
There is a deeper reason that goes beyond just making sense. Not so easy to find though.

Sam said...

I like this list. It is very thorough in pointing out the positive reasons for exercising regularly.

I have come to the conclusion that exercise is what can get us as close to the fountain of youth as possible.

When I look at people who have been working out for many years you can see that they have stayed youthful even though they are well up there in age--- Example: Jack Lalanne.

So that is another reason for exercising regularly.


Cam said...

Those are all good reasons to exercise, but I think #39 is the biggest motivation for most people I work with.