Compared to our ancestors, there are many luxuries of modern living that make it far too easy to lead a sedentary lifestyle. However, our bodies were engineered to move and be active, and this remains as true as ever.
Regular exercise is one of the most important elements for improving your overall health, with benefits including:
- Increasing energy levels and stamina by improving the efficiency of your cardiovascular system
- Improving muscle strength and joint flexibility
- Maintaining a healthy weight by burning calories and increasing metabolic rate
- Improving concentration and cognitive function by increasing blood flow and oxygen to the brain
- Lowers risk of heart disease and stroke by reducing blood pressure and LDL (bad cholesterol), while increasing HDL (good cholesterol)
- Decreases risk of developing diabetes by controlling blood sugar levels
- Enhances your immune system
- Lowers risk of osteoarthritis and osteoporosis by strengthening your bones
- Improving mood, decreasing stress, and leading to more restful sleep
- Being a fun way to spend time, meeting new people, and engaging in activities that make you happy. From walking, dancing, swimming, boxing, basketball, and everything in between, everyone can find something they enjoy.
The bottom line is that exercise is a great way to have fun while gaining very important health benefits. As a general guideline, aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity per day. Remember to talk to your doctor about any fitness goals, new exercise programs, or if you have any concerns.