Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Benefits of Exercise

If you're going to make and keep a single resolution for the New Year, how about resolving to start and stay with an exercise program. Few activities provide as many benefits as cheaply. 

Unfortunately for some, exercise works best for those who work at it. 

So, it's time to get up off of the couch, whether it is the therapist's couch or the couch you lounge around on when you're watching television. 

If perchance you spend four hours a week lying on a therapist's couch talking to the walls and four hours a week on the Stairmaster, you will owe your improved mood and attitude almost entirely to your exercise regimen.

Today, I am linking an article that is addressed to women. Link here.  

Much, if not all, of what it says applies equally to both sexes. Exercise is gender neutral; it confers its benefits equally. If you are not fully involved in an exercise program, it's never too late to start.

In a way, it's the hardest advice to take. For those of us who have a more intellectual bent, the notion that we can solve a host of problems by grunting and groaning on a treadmill feels like an affront to our cognitive abilities.

It should not be a surprise that exercise does good things for your health. Surely, it beats spending all of those hours at the doctor's office. But it also improves your mental functioning, your mood, and your attitude. 

For those of us who believe in the mind and body are inexorably spit, it does not make a lot of sense to see exercise as a treatment for what appear to be mental problems, like depression and anxiety. But, as long as exercise works as a treatment, we would do well to reconsider our theories about the disconnect between mind and body.  

Serious thinkers tend to believe that inspirational epiphanies point the way to salvation. For all I know, they may be right. But, as I mentioned two days ago people who practice religion are more likely to practice exercise, so there is, apparently, no contradiction between developing your spiritual core and working on your physical core.

If you want to own your spirituality, you need to practice it religiously, If you want to own your good health and your good mood, you need to practice good habits, like exercise.

Surely, there is more to life than exercise. But, if you refuse to exercise, and if your emotional stress is elevated to the point where you are constantly overwrought, your conduct will be dictated by your emotions and your impulses. And you are not going to be become a better person by being led around by your gut.

1 comment:

Exercise said...

That's true, exercise is beneficial for both male & female. I think exercise is more beneficial if done regularly.