Why Do We Exercise?


In this article we're going to focus on reasons to exercise. Even though most of us know that regular exercise is 'good for us', we may not be able to give the specific reasons why.

First and foremost, before we start the list, let's just admit right up front that the main reason we exercise is to look better. Hey, there's no shame in that! Perhaps we want to look better for our spouse, or maybe we want to get into shape because we're looking for a spouse. Whatever the reason, our desire to look good is a major motivator.

Many of us want to look better for ourselves. When we engage in regular resistance and aerobic exercise, it changes our appearance for the better. Less fat, toned muscle, healthier skin, a bigger smile, and more 'pep in our step' are all great reasons to exercise.

In addition to just looking better there are some real physical benefits to regular exercise. So for those of us who are working out to just look great, consider these reasons to exercise a bonus:

1. Strengthens muscles
2. Strengthens bone
3. Strengthens ligaments
4. Strengthens tendons
5. Strengthens immune system
6. Improves muscle tone
7. Improves endurance
8. Improves strength
9. Improves self esteem
10. Improves confidence
11. Improves balance
12. Improves physical appearance
13. Improves physical performance
14. Improves glucose tolerance
15. Improves circulation
16. Improves memory
17. Lower risk of heart disease
18. Lower risk of diabetes
19. Lower risk of cancer
20. Lower blood pressure
21. Lower cholesterol
22. Lower risk of stroke
23. Lower risk of osteoporosis
24. Lower risk of osteoarthritis
25. Lower requirements for medication
26. Lower risk of injury
27. Lower bodyfat
28. Helps with sleep disorders
29. Reduces post-operative complications
30. Reduces frequency of illness
31. Prevent Alzheimer's disease
32. Prevents muscle loss
33. Increases metabolism
34. Eases symptoms of menopause
35. Healthier pregnancy
36. Fewer problems with childbirth
37. Reduces ovulation problems

Moderate weight loss - of fat, not muscle - and a healthy and active lifestyle (not dieting) have been found to lower health risks and medical problems in 90 percent of overweight patients. In addition to the exercise benefits listed above, fit people are eight times less likely to die from cancer than the unfit, and 53 percent less likely to die from other diseases. Fit people are also eight times less likely to die from heart disease.

So the next time we're tempted to just sit back and watch television instead of exercising, let's remember that there are a lot of reasons to drop the remote and get moving.

Tracie Johanson is the founder of Pick Up The Pace, a 30-minute exercise studio for women focusing on fitness, health and nutrition for maximum weight loss. Please visit www.letspickupthepace.com/ for more information.

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