Exercise: 7 benefits of regular physical activity

Exercise: 7 benefits of regular physical activity

You know that exercise is good for you, but did you know just how good it is for you? From boosting your mood to improving your *** life, find out how exercise can improve your life in the following ways.

By Mayo Clinic Staff

  • Want to feel better, have more energy and even add years to your life? Just start exercising regularly.
  • The health benefits of regular exercise and physical activity are hard to ignore. Everyone benefits from exercise, regardless of age,or physical ability.
  • Need more convincing to get moving? Check out these seven ways that exercise can lead to a happier, healthier you:

1. Exercise controls weight

Exercise is a great way to prevent weight gain or help with weight loss. When you engage in physical activity, your body burns calories. The more intense the activity, the more calories you’ll burn.

Of course, it’s great to visit the gym regularly, but don’t worry if you can’t find a large chunk of time to exercise every day. Any amount of activity is better than none at all. To reap the benefits of exercise, just try to be more active throughout your day – take the stairs instead of the elevator or rev up your household chores. Consistency is key. Everyone can benefit from exercise, regardless of age, *** or physical ability.

2. Exercise combats health conditions and diseases

No matter what your weight is, being active and exercising regularly is beneficial for your overall health. It boosts levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, the “good” cholesterol, and decreases unhealthy triglycerides. This decreases your risk of cardiovascular diseases and helps to keep your blood flowing smoothly. So get up and get moving to improve your heart health today!

Exercise has countless benefits, both mentally and physically. A sedentary lifestyle can cause or worsen many health problems, including:

  • Stroke
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • High blood pressure
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Many types of cancer
  • Arthritis
  • Falls

It can also help improve cognitive function and helps lower the risk of death from all causes. So get up and get active – your body will thank you for it!

3. Exercise improves mood

Need an emotional boost? Or need to destress after a stressful day? A gym session or brisk walk can help. Physical activity stimulates various brain chemicals that may leave you feeling happier, more relaxed and less anxious. In addition, you’ll likely feel better about your appearance and yourself when you exercise regularly, which can boost your confidence and improve your self-esteem.

4. Exercise boosts energy

Feeling tired after grocery shopping or completing household chores? Regular physical activity can improve your muscle strength and increase your endurance.

Exercise helps deliver oxygen and nutrients to your tissues and cardiovascular system, making it work more efficiently. When your heart and lung health improve, you will have more energy to complete daily tasks.

5. Exercise promotes better sleep

If you’re finding it difficult to fall asleep, regular physical activity can help. Exercise can make it easier for you to fall asleep, improve the quality of your sleep and make you sleep more deeply. Just be careful not to exercise too close to bedtime, or you may find it harder to fall asleep.

6. Exercise puts the spark back into your sex life

Feeling exhausted or self-conscious about your physical appearance can put a damper on your *** life, but did you know that regular exercise can actually improve these areas? Women who work out regularly often find that their increased energy levels and confidence translates into a more enjoyable sexual experience. And for men, regular exercise can help prevent erectile dysfunction – so it’s worth getting up and moving even if you don’t feel like it at first!

7. Exercise can be fun … and social!

Exercise and physical activity can be enjoyable. They give you a chance to unwind, enjoy the outdoors or simply engage in activities that make you happy. Physical activity can also help you connect with family or friends in a fun social setting. So take a dance class, hit the hiking trails or join a soccer team. Find a physical activity you enjoy, and just do it. Bored? Try something new, or do something with friends or family. You’ll be glad you did!

The bottom line on exercise

Exercise and physical activity are great ways to improve your mental and physical health, and they can be fun too! For most healthy adults, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends getting at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity each week, or a combination of both. They also suggest spreading out this exercise over the course of a week, so you don’t try to do too much all at once.

Incorporate strength training exercises into your routine two times a week, working all major muscle groups. Use a weight or resistance level that tires your muscles after 12 to 15 repetitions for each set. Moderate aerobic activity can be anything from brisk walking and swimming, to biking and mowing the lawn. If you’re looking to up the ante, go for vigorous aerobic exercise which could include running or heavy yardwork.

If you’re looking to lose weight, get fit, or see even more health benefits, you may need to increase the level of moderate aerobic activity you’re getting.

Before beginning any new exercise routine, it’s important to check with your doctor – especially if you have any concerns about your fitness, if you haven’t exercised in a while, or if you have chronic health problems like heart disease, diabetes, or arthritis.

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