How to Get More Exercise into Your Life
We all know that exercise is good for us, yet only a fraction of Americans get adequate exercise. There are numerous reasons and excuses that keep us from exercising even though we know that exercise benefits our lives. By focusing on the benefits of exercise, excuses will become insignificant.
What Are the Major Benefits of Exercise
You don’t need to be a top-notch athlete to experience the benefits of exercise. All that is required is to engage in moderate-intensity physical activity for 30 minutes on most days of the week. One of the greatest benefits is the dramatic reduction of the risk of cardiovascular disease. Risk of diabetes, weight-gain, osteoporosis, and certain cancers are also greatly reduced through regular exercise. Muscular strength training is essential to developing and maintaining a healthy bone density and to prevent osteoporosis. It is important to build your bone density while you are young because osteoporosis can begin to form long before it is diagnosed. Additional benefits of exercise include: increased energy, improvement of physical appearance and confidence, reduction of stress, and better sleep. Exercise can be fun! Find what physical activities you enjoy and develop a new talent or skill.
How to Overcome Excuses Not to Exercise
Lack of time or support are some of the most common reasons why people do not exercise. Other excuses include: getting sweaty, little money, bad weather, unsafe neighborhoods, feelings of self-consciousness, pain, lack of equipment and children. All of the mentioned excuses are valid reasons for concern, however, they all have a solution. If you find yourself with too little time, make a list of all the daily activities and tasks you do in a typical day and for how long. If you take out just a half hour of media in your daily routine you now have time for a 30 minute workout. If you are experiencing too little support, consider recruiting a friend or family member to help you stick to your fitness goals. If you are accountable to another person about your goals, it is proven to increase the likelihood of you sticking to your plan. If you don’t want to get sweaty, consider working out indoors or before you shower for the day. Unsafe neighborhoods, bad weather, and self-consciousness can all be solved by working out indoors or going to a gym. Running during daylight hours or with a friend may also improve the safety of exercising outside. If you need to watch your children, consider taking them to the park and running around with them or pushing them in a stroller. If you are tight on money, remember that there are many free activities—you do not need to pay for a fancy gym membership or complicated equipment. If you are experiencing pain while you exercise, try to find a new activity, such as swimming or biking that is easier on your joints.
Activities for Your Daily Routine:
- Walk instead of drive whenever possible
- Yard work
- Mow the lawn with a push mower
- Parking as far away as possible
- Sit up straight at work
- Take the stairs instead of elevator
- Walk to a co-workers office instead of sending an email
- Play with your kids at the park
- Exercise with a work-out video if the weather is bad
The Culprit & The Cure, Steven G. Aldana, PH. D.