You might know that exercise gets your heart rate pumping and improves mental clarity, but why exactly do these things occur, and why are they so important for health? Here we break down seven ways that staying active improves your well-being and why staying active is so crucial for good health.
- Increases Life Expectancy
Studies have consistently shown that engaging in regular physical activity increases one’s life expectancy. Our bodies are made up of different systems that help us stay healthy and survive. Engaging in regular exercise protects these systems collectively, resulting in overall health and wellness throughout.
- Reduces Risk of Injury
Engaging in regular exercise increases muscle strength and the flexibility of bones. As a result, your risk for injury significantly decreases as your body becomes more robust and resilient when you slip and fall. You can further reduce your likelihood of falls by wearing trail sneakers for women if you happen to like running outdoors.
- Improves your Self-Image
Engaging in regular physical activity will help you feel more positive about your self-image. Since staying active helps maintain a healthy weight and improves overall strength and endurance, you will feel healthier inside and out. With a positive self-image, your mood will be more stable, and you will likely find that your level of happiness and sense of calm has increased alongside your increase in physical activity.
- Prevents Weight Gain
Staying active also prevents added weight gain. Maintaining a healthy weight reduces your risk for diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and bodily inflammation — which is a root cause of many autoimmune conditions.
- Leads to Healthier Choices
Staying active influences us to make healthier choices. When you remain active, you’re more likely to eat healthier and engage in activities that promote wellness. Those who do not stay active regularly are at a greater risk for developing health issues.
- Improves Mental Health
Your mental health also benefits from staying active. Numerous studies have shown that regular exercise reduces depression. Regular exercise improves the flow of oxygen to the brain, which in turn affects chemical levels that influence mood.
Serotonin, stress hormones and endorphins are greatly affected by exercise, impacting your mood for the better. When you exercise early enough in the day, regular physical activity can improve your sleeping patterns. Sometimes you can achieve an energy burst when you finish exercising, which is why it’s recommended to exercise at least an hour before bedtime so that you do not feel overly awake when you’re trying to fall asleep.
Studies have shown that engaging in regular exercise can reduce negative thinking patterns and intrusive thinking. Exercise has a way of blocking negative thoughts and also acts as a useful distraction from daily stress. When more oxygen is flowing to the brain, the whole entire body benefits from fresh air.
As a result, the parasympathetic nervous system is engaged, helping you stay calmer throughout your day. The ability to remain calm and relaxed improves cognition, as you’re less likely to be motivated by emotional thinking.
- Helps Combat Addiction
One of the reasons that people with addiction take up regular exercise like running is because it is known to help break addictive habits. For example, engaging in regular physical activity can help reduce urges to smoke. Staying active encourages you to make other healthy choices which can also curb your cravings for alcohol and unhealthy foods. Staying active also makes you want to drink more water which also helps reduce cravings for unhealthy foods, smoking, and excessive alcohol consumption. Adequate hydration helps to stimulate proper digestion, keeping your body satisfied and less interested in problematic consumption.
Understanding the role of oxygen and muscle training in overall well-being is crucial to your motivation towards staying active. Now that you know why engaging in physical activity works so well, you can feel assured that your efforts are well worth it!