By Chrissy MacDonald
Our bodies were designed to be active. We weren’t meant to sit in a chair all day. And yet that’s how most of us spend the majority of our days. Sitting in front of a computer screen by day and relaxing in front of the television by night.
The lifestyle where most people worked in fields, chopped their own wood and walked everywhere kept a body in shape. These days, machines do the physical work. Elevators, cars and entertainment systems are making us fat and unfit.
We have to make a point to exercise. Our bodies need regular maintenance just like our cars or they deteriorate faster. If it wasn’t for my little Vizsla puppy reminding me to get outside for a walk in the morning, it would too easy for me to be lazy. I’m not suggesting you get a puppy. But find out what works best for you.
So what can happen to an unfit inactive body? Heart disease, high blood pressure, depression, constipation, bone and muscle disorders and obesity are some examples of the effects of not exercising.
Regular physical exercise affects the body in many positive ways.
Aerobic exercise (activity that gets you breathing harder) strengthens the heart and a strong heart does more with less effort. Aerobic exercise also strengthens the lungs, improving their ability to absorb oxygen and get rid of waste. Exercise helps lower blood pressure which is a major risk factor for stroke.
A regular routine of resistance exercise (strength training) such as using free weights, resistance tubing or your own body weight helps strengthen bones which can become brittle with age. You’ll also firm up muscles for a leaner body.
Regular exercise keeps metabolism regulated so you can maintain an ideal body weight or lose weight faster.
Exercise releases endorphins that make us feel happier. These positive hormones create a natural “high.” You’ll be able to handle stressful situations more easily and be more relaxed and content.
The sooner you start exercising, the sooner you’ll realize the benefits. No matter what your age or physical condition, regular exercise can improve your quality of life.
Good things happen to those who exercise!