Monday, August 25, 2008

Why Exercise: Do it For Health

Why Exercise: Do it For Health
Author: Christine Erickson

Why exercise? Exercise although it gets a lot of attention and publicity does not seem to get incorporated into most peoples lives. Every year millions of individuals make the big New Years Resolution that this is the year they are goes to lose weight and get in shape but very few follow through. They focus for many is to drop the pounds for the sake of their appearance when in really the focus should be on health. If everyone made their own health a priority in their own lives weight would no longer be an issue because they both go hand in hand.

The benefits of exercise are vast and really endless and go far beyond be able to fit into your favorite outfit or being able to flex your impressive muscles. If is of course true that exercise in combination with a proper balanced diet will lead to weight loss which is a fantastic result however there is really so much more to be gained that most individuals are not even aware of or that is not at the forefront of our mind.

By regularly incorporating a few exercise activities into your life which both strengthen and stretch your muscles you are gaining extraordinary benefits to your health. I am sure most have heard that muscles burn fat, this is true in the sense that there is a direct correlation between the amount of muscle you have and the rate of your metabolism. The more muscle the higher your metabolism. Exercising also has the added bonus of decreasing your appetite.

In addition exercises that work the muscles; known as resistance training also help to strengthen your bones. By doing these types of exercise puts stress on your bones signaling your body to put effort into rebuilding your bones in those areas. This helps to prevent excess bone loss as we age because in reality with out intervention on our part we begin to loss muscle mass from the point we reach our maximum which is in our twenties.

Exercising will also help alleviate joint pain whether it is in your knees, back, hips, or neck in three ways. The first is the natural weight loss that will occur with exercise, as you lose the weight there is less and less stress being put on your joints. The second is the strengthening of the joints themselves. The third deals with the fact that those individuals who exercise tends to have better posture, for instance back pain in a lot of instances is caused by weak muscles of the back and the abdomen. You will notice shortly after you commit to an exercise routine you posture will improve drastically.

Exercise is also important for heart health as the heart is a muscle it is the same as any our tissue in your body, if you do not use it you will lose it. Anytime you workout and increase your heart rate you are strengthening it and your lungs. In addition exercise benefits cardiovascular system as a whole, as it keeps your blood vessels open and clog free which in turn helps to ward off high blood pressure, high cholesterol (the bad kind), heart attacks and strokes.

Another fabulous benefit of exercise is the fact that it stimulates the release of endorphins. Endorphins are essentially chemicals which stimulate the pleasure centers of the brain. They will make you feel energized and in control (great stress release). This release of endorphins is so strong that exercise is being successfully used to treat many individuals with depression. In addition with exercise, you will begin to feel stronger, more focused, more energetic, less stressed, and will have improved confidence.

The fact is; those individuals who engage in exercise for the sole purpose of weight loss more often then not give it up because at some point they will hit a wall or plateau and frustration sets in. Plateaus do eventually end but the bigger point is that although the scale is not dropping as quickly as you may like you are improving the strengthen and health of your body. Having a strong healthy body is not only beneficial in the present but it is very beneficial as we age and impacts greatly how we are going to age. Make health your focus and the rest will fall into line.

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