We all know exercise is important just as well as eating vegetables… But do you take the time to exercise or to be more active?
Let me tell you that it doesn’t have to be as hard as it seems! I want to show you in this article how it can be a lot easier than you think to be active and stay in shape! And this is even backed up by research.
IN THIS ARTICLE
- A lifestyle perspective that needs to change.
- The TOP 5 proven Benefits that exercise has for your body!
- Easy and convenient steps and tips to adding exercise to your daily family routine.
Exercise and being active is important. “If you cannot find time for physical activity in your life, sooner or later you will have to find time for disease”.
“Lack of physical activity affects almost every cell, organ, and system in the body causing sedentary dysfunction and accelerated death”.
“Overwhelming evidence proves the notion that reductions in daily physical activity are primary causes of chronic diseases/conditions and that physical activity/exercise is rehabilitative treatment (therapy) from the inactivity-caused dysfunctions”.
Simply put… No exercise = Chronic disease and premature death. And exercise is therapy and treatment for the cure.
However! There is really good news backed by research and experience! There is so much you can do easily and conveniently to stay in shape and live a vibrant life!
A Change in perspective
The same study as in the above quotations made an interesting remark.
It stated, and quite frankly reminded us, that our human existence depends on our physical activity, the food we eat and reproduction. These cannot be choices but requirements for survival.
Since we as humans were created, we have been able to find exercise and physical activity throughout the daily routine of life. Humans have always had to work hard everyday to survive and provide. Always on our feet. Always moving.
TODAY, for the majority of us, we now have the choice NOT to be physically active. Today we find most things handed to us with very little work involved at all.
- We choose to take the elevator not the stairs,
- TV over getting out and swimming or skating…
- We choose takeout and the drive thru over shopping or hunting for ingredients and making it ourselves.
- Choosing “lose weight quick” diet schemes over self-control and hard work…
For the first time ever we see a trend in decreasing life expectancy (WHO link). Over 35 chronic diseases that are plaguing our continent and physical activity or lack of it, could be a substantial reason why.
We were made to move and be out in nature. I think we have become lazy and need to switch our mindset. Develop new healthy habits again!
For example… One of the things my family has done this winter is to go skating every week. It has been so much fun watching our children learn how to skate and to just get out together as a family! But the temptation not to go out is always there… It is hard work to get out and it is a lot of work especially with a young family. But it is totally worth it.
I know and testify to the fact that the kids will benefit greatly from it in many ways including physically and mentally… We all feel so much better after and that is what keeps us going.
Once you realize how good you can feel after physical activity you won’t want to go back! At least I haven’t… Anyone else feel the same?
Here are the Top 5 benefits you can get from Physical activity that I feel are most important for your health!
1. You will feel so much better.
Have you ever felt better after having exercised? I mean yes, there is some pain that comes from your muscles stretching for sure… But after I have a workout I am awake, more energy and a clearer mind. I feel great! I definitely don’t regret choosing to exercise.
After a slow day at work I can definitely feel that I need to get moving or else I won’t be productive and probably won’t sleep well either. Many people today sit a lot at work and then come home and sit some more. It is not how we were meant to live.
But don’t just take my word for it. A study was done while following 190 students at the university of Wisconsin. It quotes “We found that people who are more physically active have more pleasant-activated feelings than people who are less active, and we also found that people have more pleasant-activated feelings on days when they are more physically active than usual,” They also were able to rule out other factors adding to these feelings like adequate sleep…
In another study, people who are more active also have:
- More energy
- Less stress
- Reduced depression
- Reduced anxiety
I find it also very interesting what else was noted… It quotes: “To acutely improve depressed mood, exercise of any intensity significantly improved feelings of depression with no differential effect following light, moderate, or hard exercise.”
I think our society today has the mindset that we need to exercise with great intensity to be in shape or lose weight… That is false. To simply stay in shape and to keep your blood circulating and organs running well, you just need to get out/up and move more often! Light, moderate, or hard, just get going!
2. Exercise improves sleep.
Have you ever wondered why you sleep better after a day outside in the fresh air? Or after you have physically worked hard all day?
If you sit all day and are not active, don’t be surprised if you can’t sleep well at night. And for sure don’t go to the doctor and let him/her diagnose you with a sleeping disorder or start you on any drug to help you sleep!
Get out and get active! Work hard and don’t sit around on your devices! You’ll be surprised how much better you sleep and feel!
Northwestern University school of medicine took a group of adults with chronic insomnia 55 years or older… Not one regularly exercised. They were all put on a moderate exercise program for 16 weeks.
At first there was no real difference. But by the end they all were sleeping great with increased mood and energy! The quality and quantity improved as well while being on this exercise plan.
This testifies to the fact that you need to be consistently active. Not just here and there but… It needs to be a lifestyle choice. And remember… Light, moderate or hard… For the average person it doesn’t matter as long as you are actively doing something!
So get out and build new habits that create a lifestyle of getting exercise being active!
3. Exercise reduces chronic disease.
I think most of us have heard that “sitting is the new smoking”? Lack of activity and exercise keeps our tissues and muscles out of shape and that could and does lead to inflammation. Inflammation breads disease.
We are always told to rest when we are sick and especially when we have an injury to recover. It is true that rest is important but all in balance. The muscles need to also stay in shape. Movement is proven to be very healthy for injuries and chronic disease especially those with pain.
There is so much scientific evidence that has been ignored. This evidence all supports the fact that physical INACTIVITY is a primary and actual cause of most chronic diseases!
This study states that “A Lack of physical activity affects almost every cell, organ, and system in the body causing sedentary dysfunction and accelerated death. The only valid scientific therapeutic approach to completely counter sedentary dysfunction is primary prevention with physical activity itself”.
In summary, “the body rapidly maladapts to insufficient physical activity, and if continued, results in substantial decreases in both total and quality years of life”.
In other words… Inactivity causes disease and physical activity is its prevention.
Chronic diseases are absolutely connected with a lack of exercise…
- insulin resistance,
- type 2 diabetes,
- coronary heart disease,
- peripheral artery disease,
- congestive heart failure,
- depression and anxiety,
- osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis
- bone fracture/falls,
- colon cancer,
- breast cancer
- PREMATURE DEATH…
This study by the University of Malaysia says that not being physically active as a child will have a greater chance later in life of getting chronically sick.
Does that worry you? What will you do about this? Is sitting in front of your device all day every day worth it?
As I said above. Exercise doesn’t have to be hard. Whether it’s light moderate or hard – But keep moving and add some activity into every day!
4. Exercise is great for weight loss.
And this one goes without saying but a lack of exercise is a major factor in weight gain.
You see, when you exercise, it increases your body’s metabolism which burns calories for you. If you sit, calories sit, then the body stores them as fat in the belly, liver and other organs.
You can imagine the effects this has on your body as fat sits around and prohibits the body from doing its job. Cells will be destroyed causing inflammation and disease. This will manifest itself differently in each individual from the list of chronic conditions above. Like this one for diabetes.
It’s also interesting to note that a decrease in metabolism will affect energy levels and nutrient intake… This will leave your cells deficient and it is shown here in a graph a few pages down in this interesting article.
This study involving women 35-50 years old concluded that women who are habitually active maintain lower body fat and better metabolic (digestive) rates. And in others…
- Exercise plays a huge role in adolescents.
- Exercise plays a role in men.
So add some activity and exercise into your daily routine to help your metabolism and lose some weight!
5. Exercise increases strength.
Exercise increases strength. And many of us often focus on strengthening our muscles that can be seen… Which is the group called our “skeletal muscles”. The muscles surrounding our bones.
Now yes, increasing strength means bigger muscles… You need to be active and exercise enough to give your muscles a good stretch. Then rest and give your body aminos and other nutrients through food to be able to heal and grow.
There are 3 types of muscles groups…
But the types of muscles that have a great effect on your health that people do not know about and don’t get a lot of attention are your cardiac and smooth muscles.
Cardiac muscles are the muscles around your heart that keep it beating and smooth muscles are those that dilate and constrict your blood vessels throughout your body. Very important for them to stay in shape too.
It is here in the cardiac and smooth muscles where the battle is fought against inflammation and the ultimate health and strength of your body. This allows circulation to be efficient during times of increased exercise and activity.
Physical activity and exercise:
- Keep your heart in shape to be able to pump blood efficiently.
- Keep your lungs in shape as they work on the exchange between oxygen to your cells and Co² (used O²) out of your cells.
- Allows for great and efficient circulation to your brain and extremities.
- Keeping the lymphatic system clean among many others…
Exercise not only helps muscles but also your bones! Strong healthy bones will help against things like osteoporosis and chronic fatigue…
If you do not exercise, as you get older, your muscles will be weakened and lose mass and the ability to function properly. I often see how this leads to injuries, disabilities and disease as a medic.
“Exercising early in life will optimize peak bone mass and thus preventing bone diseases later in life”.
There is no time like the present to get out and exercise to improve the health and strength of your muscles and bones!
Where do I start?
I am not perfect and no one will be. It is so easy to take the easy way out and put off exercise. But I have learned that me and my children will always feel better, sleep better and be in better moods if we get out and exercise!
Getting exercise is 1 of the 5 essentials to maintaining good health! If your looking for an easy and free plan to get you on the right tract – sign up below for the family challenge!
Each day I teach about 1 of the 5 essentials, give tasty smoothie recipes for your whole family to enjoy!
Our family chooses to do physical activities together each week. With each new season, we sit down and talk about what activity we can do…
- For family time
- To learn
- Improve skills
- To grow
- And to be healthy.
We go for walks in different places, biking, playgrounds, swimming, skating, sledding… For example this winter we go skating together each week.
As the weather permits, with our children, time outside playing and running around is encouraged each day. If we cannot get outside then our time in front of screens is limited. Not that watching things is bad but TOO MUCH is too much. And its effects are easily noticed haha!
Me and my wife also try to get extra exercise and stretching. We have our own routine that we do a handful of times throughout the week before the kids get up.
Here in this video below, is a peak of what I do that is simple and convenient for anyone with a busy family!
There is ample testimonies and research telling you that you need to get out, exercise and be physically active to be healthy!
It is shown that exercise:
- Makes you feel better.
- Improves your sleep.
- Reduces disease and your chances of having disease.
- Cuts off fat cells making you obese.
- Increases strength to muscles and bones…
Exercise will also help with energy, memory, performance and to stimulate hormones throughout the body.
So much shows us that the lack of exercise is a cause for chronic disease. And the prevention and cure is to exercise.
Today like no other generation, you have the choice to be lazy or to be active.
What will you choose?
Photo by Louis Hansel @shotsoflouis on Unsplash
Photo by Benjamin Voros on Unsplash
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