For years and years and years the common misconception has been that in order to lose weight, we must exercise! Or, said in a different way, exercise equates to weight loss.
Both statements may contain temporary truths in some situations, but actually, the reason exercise is a “good thing” for our bodies, is because it’s “healthy.”
What does healthy mean?
While you move your muscles and your body you are benefiting:
Exercise increases the production of endorphins, which help produce positive feelings and reduce the perception of pain. Exercise also reduces symptoms of anxiety, depression, and stress.
Your Muscles and Bones:
Exercise is essential to maintaining bone density and muscle mass, which naturally decreases as you age. This can lead to dysfunction and injury (and pain).
Your Energy Level:
Moving on a regular basis is a natural energy booster! It may seem counter intuitive, but actually getting up off the couch and elevating your heart rate reduces fatigue immediately and over time.
Your Risk of Chronic Disease:
This may be the most important benefit for many of us – research shows that a lack of regular physical activity is the primary cause of chronic disease: insulin sensitivity, high blood pressure, heart disease, etc. Thus, consistent and regular (3-5 days a week) activity benefits your short-term and long-term health and longevity.
And, just a little side note, those who use exercise as a weight loss mechanism typically do not sustain the weight loss over the long term. What’s more, the additional energy expenditure often can cause an increase in appetite and calorie consumption.
So, if you’re looking to drops some pounds, remember that your waistline is a result of what’s happening in the kitchen.
“Health” and overall wellbeing from exercise happens when you “pound the pavement.”