Move to improve your quality of life
Published by: LifeWorks,
When we think about exercise, our minds often go to the most common benefits such as losing weight and making our heart and lungs stronger. Yet, research has shown that there are many other gains we may experience when we incorporate physical fitness into our daily lives.
By going for that extra walk with the dog, playing baseball with the kids, or joining a friend at the yoga studio, you may experience these added improvements to your life:
A stronger immune system: This helps prevent and/or delay chronic diseases such as diabetes, reduces the risk of certain cancers, and makes it less likely to develop cardiovascular diseases including heart attack and stroke.
Weight management: Losing weight provides a way to “get rid of” those extra calories we may have eaten.
Increased self-esteem: Having a healthy sense of self-esteem puts us in a more positive frame of mind, letting us feel better about ourselves, making us more confident, and encouraging us to go after our goals.
Happier mood: Exercise causes our brains to release “feel good” chemicals called endorphins, according to the Mayo Clinic. Endorphins can act like a natural painkiller and generate an overall feeling of well-being.
Brain power boost: Physical fitness aids in reducing fatigue and sharpens concentration and memory. It also appears to lessen the chances of developing dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, according to researchers.
Better night’s sleep: Moving more allows us to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer and more soundly.
Improved stress management: Exercise releases tension and reduces anxiety making it easier for us to think more clearly and problem solve, according to the Mayo Clinic.
More resistance to injury: Exercising develops stronger joints, making it less likely that you’ll fall as you age.
Broadened social connections: By attending classes at the gym or joining a local running group, you’ll have the opportunity to meet new people, develop friendships, and limit feelings of loneliness.
It’s never too late to start moving to improve. Grab a tennis racket, go for a run, or chase the kids around the yard. It all counts toward improving your overall quality of life.
Monica Tomalka has been a Health and Wellness Coach at LifeWorks for over 10 years. Prior to that, she spent 21 years in cardiac rehabilitation, 17 as a coordinator. She has a Bachelor of Science from Central Michigan University in Health Fitness and Health Promotion in the Hospital/Corporate Setting with a minor in Psychology. She is a Certified Clinical Exercise Physiologist through the American College of Sports Medicine, a Certified Wellcoaches Health and Wellness Coach and a certified NESTA Fitness Nutrition Coach.