Nowadays we get so much advice related to keeping in shape and staying healthy. And it can certainly be difficult to absorb it all, especially when some of the advice seems to be contradictory. Do you feel overwhelmed with good advice?
For sure, many people get confused by the massive amount of information on the do's and don'ts of well-being. However when it comes to the need for some of sort regular physical activity - there seems to be a universal agreement among scientists.
What is that? Well, if you want better health, you need to exercise regularly.
One of the main reasons why we get so much exercise advice thrown our way is because of how rare exercise has become. Sadly the lack of enough physical activity is becoming a serious problem in modern times. It seems people are just pushing exercise to the sidelines, try to bury the thought of it, and instead choose a bag of chips and the sofa.
People today enjoy relatively better health and longer life span than those who lived centuries ago. And for a large part, this is due to technology. Modern inventions have made tasks easier, improved the way we manage our health and treat diseases,etc. Technology has changed the way we do things. Tasks that might have been considered laborious have become more bearable.
There us an irony in this however.
While technology has contributed to better health, with the passing of time it has also contributed to a more sedentary life-style in a large section of the population.
How does that work? Well think of it, in many lands 50 years ago, a person would sweat a lot all day from working hard with a horse and plow. They would perform demanding errands and travel around all day. Life has changed quite a bit, hasn't it? People still work hard, but there is quite a bit of physical inactivity.
The modern worker may sit in front of a computer most of the day, drive a car virtually everywhere they need to go, and spend their evening in front of the TV.
Yep, modern technology has produced a generation of sedentary children.
And sadly this decline in exercise has brought greater risks. The drastic reduction in physical exertion has led to many physical mental and emotional health problems.
Health agencies have reported that inactive children are at risk of poorer self-esteem, greater anxiety and higher stress levels.
In later life inactive people lose the basic strength and flexibility a person needs to accomplish daily activities. Thus, many lose their independence and have poorer mental health.
Research even suggests that the risk from physical inactivity is larger the risk from smoking tobacco. How so? Well, it is widely accepted that compared with active people, inactive people tend to have higher blood pressure, a higher risk of strokes and heart attacks, a higher risk of developing certain types of cancers and many other risks.
Many governments around the world have started various programs designed to educated the public on the benefits of exercise.
Ultimately though, the responsibility falls on each one of us. How well will you look after you body?
It helps if we ask ourselves 'Am I active enough?' 'Am I getting frequent exercise? If not, what can I do to break free from this sedentary lifestyle?
Leaving exercise out of your life can be expensive, literally.
The lack of exercise has actually placed a huge financial strain on society. It's something that's worrying governments and health organizations around the world.
● Australia - In this country the yearly health-care costs linked to physical inactivity amount to about $377 million.
● Canada - According to the World Heart Federation, during just one year, Canada spent more than $2 billion on health-care costs “attributable to physical inactivity.”
● United States - During the year 2000, the United States spent the astronomical figure of $76 billion on medical costs directly associated with physical inactivity.
But apart from the dollars, not exercising can be really dangerous and costly to your health. According to the American Heart Association, physical inactivity “doubles the risk of developing heart disease and increases the risk of hypertension by 30 percent.
Ok, so we know the bad stuff that happens when you don't exercise. But what about the good stuff? Why should you exercise?
There are many reasons why one should exercise, even for people who are not overweight.
Fresh air- exercise gives you a great opportunity to get out and just enjoy the breeze. I love running or even power walking as a way to get some fresh air and a clearer mind. Take whatever sport you love and do it outside. It will feel great and refreshing.
Also, the section of your day that you set aside for exercise may be the only real chance you get to enjoy the outdoors and spend some good time outside of a building. So I like to make the most of it by having a good workout!
Exercise can help with depression- having some time to exercise can relieve you a lot and can make you have a brighter outlook than if you were cooped up all day. Exercise can help you feel much better emotionally.
Lovers of fitness will really understand this, because physical activity really affects our mood. In addition to being fun, vigorous exercise can cause the brain to release chemicals called endorphins into the bloodstream. Also, we feel proud of our physical improvement, with helps to increase our self-esteem.
Exercise can encourage you to stick with your food plan - A exercise plan goes wonderful with a good food plan. If you are trying hard to keep fit by exercising, that will give you that extra motivation to stick to your diet or achieve your food goals. The two go hand-in-hand. I mean, after you start enjoying some of the benefits that you will feel after an exercise session, you're much less likely to give into any fast food craving. You're also less likely to eat things that are not serving the new healthier you!
One of the most obvious reasons is weight loss - This is often the real motivation for exercising. And yes, there is no doubt that exercise will speed up your plan to lose weight. If you are watching your calories and exercising on a regular basis, the weight will come off and every drop of sweat will be worth it.
What is important to remember...
Exercise doesn't make you a fitness maniac. It is something most of us can do and easily incorporate into our lives. Yep, into the busiest of schedules. Exercise is the basic need of your body to work properly.
Exercise can help sort out hormone irregularities and bodily sloth. A well arranged exercise plan will help you keep your muscles toned and the bodily organs functioning brilliantly. Who doesn't want that?
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