Imagine if I told you that I knew about something that would improve your confidence, strengthen your heart, strengthen your bones, prevent sickness, improve oxygen supply, improve balance and co-ordination, boost your productivity, reduce stress, improve your mental health and lift your mood.
Imagine if that ‘something’ didn’t need to cost you much money, or take up much time. Imagine if it was easy to access, and available to everyone, regardless of age or gender or demographic.
You’d want to know about it, wouldn’t you? You’d want to bring it into your life, just like you brought in green smoothies and multivitamins and fish oil and kale.
The thing is – you know about it already. It’s exercise. You know – that thing we’re all supposed to be doing, but spend a whole lot of our lives avoiding.
Exercise has a million benefits that we’re already aware of, and probably some that are still yet to be discovered. We all know how good it makes us feel. And yet we’ve gotten to a point where we never really truly consider those benefits. We only ever really think about one reason to exercise: weight loss.
It’s not particularly surprising, especially considering we’re living a life that means we’re constantly bombarded by new diets and weight loss products and skinny celebrities and The Biggest Loser. But it’s also what’s making us disillusioned with work-outs. It’s what makes us drag our feet to the gym, or struggle to get up in the morning. It’s what makes us hate the number on the scales, and hate it even more when we don’t seem to be losing any kilos, despite our efforts on the treadmill or the weights machines.
Let’s get back to thinking less about the centimetres around our waist, and more about how good our bodies feel when we’re moving them. Let’s try to lose the focus on getting skinny, and refocus to feeling amazing.
Here are six reasons to exercise that you might never have given much thought to. Enjoy:
1. It will make you happier.
Exercise has been shown to reduce anxiety, stress and depression as well as making people generally happier. This, of course, is all thanks to endorphins – hormones generally associated with peace, calm and stress relief. Oh, and it’s good for self esteem and confidence, too – think about how great you feel when you’re feeling toned after a few weeks of workouts.