“God, Joyce,” you mutter as you click the link and read the title of this post, rolling your eyes. “Everyone knows its good to exercise, whether you do or not. Why write about this?”
Why yes. You are right about that. But most people think that you should exercise to be skinnier; lose weight; look attractive. Purely physical reasons. And those may be good enough reasons to do so, but are they good enough intrinsic motivators for everyone?
I’m not gonna lie, it took me a really long time to commit to working out on a regular basis. I tried all sorts of methods. But once I got into the groove of things and made it a habit, it really did change my life, and not just in terms of appearances.
My 5 personal reasons to exercise:
- A good workout makes you feel more energized. You may think ‘Oh I’m really tired, I’m not gonna work out’. But truth is, working out gives you more energy to accomplish those other tasks. It makes your brain more sharp and acute, and you can think more clearly. Oftentimes I’ll come home from work and feel absolutely exhausted, but after a good workout I feel re-energized and ready to tackle my to-do list in the evening.
- You get physically and mentally stronger. You are no longer out of breath when making a dash for the bus or walking up a few flights of stairs. You don’t feel like such a slob. You actually have a desire to take on challenges like the Grouse Grind (which I’m doing tomorrow! I’m so excited) and other hikes, and enjoy recreational physical activities. Realizing what you are physically capable of, transcends into other aspects of your life and empowers you on a deeper level.
- Sweating on a regular basis removes the toxins from your body and helps you maintain a strong immune system, which translates to less sick days! And nobody likes to be sick. It gets in the way of life.
- You see physical body changes. Here are where the physical changes kick in. Your body slims down. You drop a couple of pant sizes. You see muscles developing, and your body just feels less flabby and more toned. The number on the scale decreases slowly but surely. It’s very encouraging and satisfying to see. And the best part is, when you lose weight in a healthy, steady manner and not from crash dieting (in which you inevitably gain the weight back as soon as you resume eating normally), it stays off.
- It helps you stay sane and manage stress. You may be in the midst of exams as a student, a crunch time at work, or have your hands full dealing with your children. Whatever it is, carving out a bit of time to work out will make the biggest world of difference, even just 20-30 minutes a day. It really to helps lower your stress and anxiety levels as exercise causes your body to release endorphins, which are feel-good, “happy” neurotransmitters, giving you a sort of natural high. This will also help you perform better in your other tasks, sleep more soundly, and approach the other aspects of your life with a clearer, calmer mind.
I hope this helps anyone out there who needs motivation or encouragement to commit to exercising. I understand 100% how difficult it is, and how much self-control and discipline it takes, but I promise you, it is so worth it in the end. Just take the plunge, and thank me later 😉