Incorporating physical activity into your everyday routine comes with numerous short term and long term health benefits. From seeing physical results to lowering your risk for heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, and osteoporosis, exercising can definitely be a positive influence on your life. Exercise is generally defined as some type of bodily movement that requires your muscles to work and, in turn, burn calories.
There are endless ways to implement exercise into your lifestyle: a brisk walk, running, strength training, biking, and swimming are just a few of the many options. It is important to find a style of exercise that suits you and your body well, as everyone is different and their bodies respond in different ways.
The StreetStrider is a great way to get started. It’s a full-body workout and is easy on your joints. So if you have not yet embraced the importance of exercising, this read will hopefully have you thinking differently. Here are the top 10 benefits of exercise:
#1: Improve Your Health And Wellness
Regular physical activity can impact your overall health and can support multiple systems throughout your body. It can help reduce the risk of developing chronic diseases such as coronary heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Here are some of a few ways that regularly exercising can benefit your overall health and wellness:
Supports The Cardiovascular System
Being active, especially if you're doing aerobic exercise, helps your body combat the ‘bad’ cholesterol and the unwanted triglycerides while promoting the production of the ‘good’ cholesterol, also known as the high-density lipoproteins (HDL’s). This, in turn, helps your blood flow more smoothly, decreasing the chances of acquiring cardiovascular diseases such as a stroke, atherosclerosis, and congestive heart failure. It also can play a role in helping to decrease blood pressure and heart rate for people with hypertension.
Maintains Blood Sugar Levels
Diabetes is one of the most common diseases in the United States. Regularly exercising helps your body in maintaining and managing your body’s blood sugar levels and insulin.
Whether you are walking, jogging, or lifting weights, your muscles are continuously working to provide the energy you need to continue your workout. Through this, your muscles are using up stored or free glucose in the bloodstream to provide an adequate energy source for your body. Over a period of time, this helps lower your blood sugar levels and helps the insulin in your body to work a little better.
Reduces Risk In Cancer Development
Research shows that incorporating physical activity into your daily routine can help lower risk of developing the eight most common cancers, which include stomach, colon, kidney, endometrium, bladder, esophagus, lung, and breast cancer.
Although the specific type and duration of exercise to best prevent such cancers remain unclear, it is certain that any type of exercise is favorable to no exercise at all. Prolonged sitting or being stationary for extended periods of time alone can influence your risk of developing cancer.
#2: Weight Management
With any type of physical activity comes the benefit of shedding some extra calories. Weight loss programs consist of two components: diet and exercise. Through this, it is important to understand the concept of the number of calories in versus the amount of energy you use.
Simply put, to maintain your weight, you would want to burn off an equal amount of calories that you consume. To lose weight, you would want to burn off more calories than what you consume. A healthy balance of the said concept can help promote weight management in your life.
Aside from exercise, your body burns off energy naturally throughout the day. Your body uses energy to digest food between meals and to maintain your bodily functions such as your heart and respiratory rate.
Depending on your height, weight, and gender, you can calculate your basal metabolic rate (BMR), which estimates how many calories your body expends at rest. With this calculation plus the amount of energy you would use during a workout, you will be able to roughly see how many calories you can burn throughout the day.
#3: Promotes Mental Health
During exercise, your body releases natural chemicals, like endorphins, serotonin, and dopamine, throughout your body. These chemicals are typically referred to as ‘feel-good hormones’ because, simply put, they just make you and your body feel good. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter or chemical signal that has multiple functions throughout the body. These functions range from having responsibilities for thinking and planning to letting you experience feelings of pleasure and satisfaction. Endorphins are also neurotransmitters produced in the body that functions in a way to help reduce stress and pain.
As exercising releases many other natural chemicals throughout the body, these two main neurotransmitters alone can affect one’s mental health. From easing stress and anxiety to improving short-term and long-term depression, as well as reducing the risk of depression, exercising is an organic way to help improve your mental health. Exercise can also help to improve cognitive function.
#4: Aids In Better Sleep
Getting a good night’s sleep alone is important in mental development, recovery, and overall health. It is a time for your body to relax, reset, and recuperate after a long day. During a night’s sleep, a lot more goes on than you think. For example, your brain is constantly working and sorting out certain memories and events that happened that day. Your metabolism is still continuously working, which means your body is still burning off some extra calories even when you are asleep.
Exercising aids in better sleep quality and can help improve symptoms of insomnia. Working your body out throughout the day results in a higher quality of sleep and a longer duration of sleep for your body to recover and re-energize for the next day.
#5: Supports Musculoskeletal Health
Regular exercise supports your bones and muscles, regardless of age. With younger adults, exercising can help grow and strengthen your body and muscles. With older adults, working out can help in slowing the process of bone density loss, which is a natural result of the aging process.
Utilizing machines like an elliptical is a great way to incorporate both your upper and lower body in a single workout. Consider trying out the StreetStrider for an awesome full-body workout. Due to its mobile feature, it is simple to use as the action comes naturally, mimicking the motions of an outdoor jog.
#6: Natural Energy Booster
Like we mentioned earlier, exercising is an organic way to release natural hormones throughout the body to make you feel good. Another way exercising can affect your mood is by improving your energy levels, which can significantly benefit people who commonly experience fatigue.
Exercising causes your heart and lungs to work a little harder in order to provide sufficient nutrients and oxygen to your working muscles. This helps to improve the conditions of your heart and lungs and, in turn, gives your body more stamina to tackle daily chores.
#7: Promotes Healthy Skin
Your skin is your body’s first line of defense as it protects the outer layer of your body from harmful environmental factors. Factors such as sun exposure and oxidative stress can cause irreversible damage to your skin. To combat the stress your skin takes on, it is important for your body to produce antioxidants to help repair damaged cells.
Moderate exercise regulated throughout your life can help produce those natural antioxidants that your skin needs to regenerate. Antioxidants not only help in repairing skin cells and improving skin health, but it also helps in stimulating blood flow throughout your body, resulting in a more youthful and ageless appearance.
#8: Prevents Cognitive Decline
Exercising triggers your body to release other hormones and chemicals that are involved in the development of brain cells. These brain cells are responsible for functions such as memory and planning. As previously mentioned, physical activity induces more blood to flow to your body, including the brain, to ensure adequate delivery of nutrients and oxygen.
As your body feeds your brain with essential nutrients and oxygen, your brain is able to function more efficiently and effectively. Improving your brain's capacity and ability to function helps to reduce the aging process that naturally occurs.
#9: Promotes Sex Drive
We mentioned some benefits of exercise earlier, including better circulation flow and increased energy, but exercise also helps in toning muscles to improve flexibility and strength. All of these benefits combined can help improve your sex life and performance. Regular exercise can improve performance in men who suffer from erectile dysfunction and can help uplift one’s libido and arousal.
#10: Encourages Social Life
The thing about exercise is that it can happen anywhere, anytime with anyone! Who said exercising couldn’t be enjoyable? Enroll in a Zumba class, find a local hiking trail, or simply take a stroll on the StreetStrider and enjoy the outdoors. Studies have shown that people who exercise outdoors experience more energy, more satisfaction, and overall feel more revitalized than exercising indoors.
In conclusion, exercising regularly provides so many hidden benefits that you may easily look past. From short term results to affecting the longevity of your health and wellness, it is easy to say that being physically active supports a favorable outcome. So start incorporating exercise into your daily routine! Mix up your everyday activities to make them more active, grab a friend, and get started.