Are There Really Good Reasons To Exercise?

An individual can’t be blamed for wondering if there are truly benefits to a regular exercise regime. There are many, many studies out there to be sure lauding the benefits of regular exercise. And there’s a lot of conflicting information out there as well, often contradicting the claims of proponents of certain types of exercise. So who’s right? Who’s wrong?

The Pros And Cons Of An Exercise Program
Like pretty much everything else in life, an exercise program has both its plus and negative aspects. The right one can provide bountiful physical health returns, improve emotional health, and sharpen mental acuity. The wrong once can cause physical injury, aggravate pre-existing medical conditions, and result in frustration. Plus, how many of us have expensive exercise equipment in our closets that we never use?

The Secret To A Successful Exercise Program
You can get desired results from exercise, but to do so, you shouldn’t just work out- you should first be doing homework. What are your goals in exercising? While the purpose of exercise is to challenge yourself on multiple levels, you don’t want to cause yourself undue stress physically or emotionally, either. So before beginning any exercise program, ask yourself:

Can I participate in this type of exercise safely?
Is this type of exercise within my budget, both financially and time-wise?
Can this type of exercise be performed with modifications?

The Unseen Benefits Of Exercise
A successful exercise program, one that the participant enjoys doing, can improve self-esteem, anxiety, and body image, as well as alleviate depression. It can even be useful as a tool in fighting various types of addiction, such as cigarette smoking. Regular exercise also improves cognition skills and produces endorphins, which help in concentration and reaching goals. So yes, an intelligent exercise program can make you, well, more intelligent.

Visible Benefits Of Exercise
Healthy skin, nails, and hair. Improved organ capacity. Stronger muscles and bones. Healthier weight. Increased physical endurance. Fewer injuries and illnesses. These are just a few of the physical results of leading a healthy lifestyle that includes exercise.

Tailoring Your Exercise Program
As you set out on the path to wellness, remember that the ideal exercise program is one that is affordable, enjoyable, one that can be modified if needed and desired, and one that the participant will stick with. Can the desired program be performed in a variety of settings? Alone or with others? Below are some suggestions that fit all of the above criteria.

Yoga
There’s controversy as to how long this Eastern combination of physical, mental, and physical disciplines has been around, but the earliest written record of its practice dates from 3000 B.C. in what is now India. If it’s been around this long, there’s got to be a reason for its appeal, and in addition to being appropriate for either solitary or group pursuit, yoga:

Improves posture and flexibility
Protects spine
Improves immune system
Protects heart
Increases mental stimulation
Aids in calming techniques and meditation

Walking
Yes! Just putting one foot in front of another is not only easy enough for most of us to do, it is one of the most beneficial forms of exercise that there is. A daily half an hour walk at a reasonably brisk pace can:

Reduce chances for contracting Type II Diabetes
Enhances sexual functioning and enjoyment
Increases odds of surviving breast cancer
Reduces risk of strokes
Reduces risk of dementia

And That’s Not All
Swimming, weight lifting, running, and low impact aerobics are other examples of beneficial exercise that’s generally low-cost and that can be done either alone or with company. A great place to start before actually starting to exercise is your doctor’s office. He or she can both determine if certain exercise is appropriate for you, and offer advice to get started.