Real Reasons To Exercise (Part 2)
March 7, 2014

Real Reasons To Exercise (Part 2)

In Part 1 of this series, we looked at general health benefits of exercise. Now let’s look at specific physical benefits. Here’s a quick reference, followed by a breakdown of each:

  1. Decreases Back Pain
  2. Reduces Risk of Injury
  3. Increases Range of Motion
  4. Increases Functional Strength
  5. Prolongs Life
  6. Improves Balance and Coordination
  7. Weight Control
  8. Reduces Aches and Pains
  9. Lose the Hidden Fat

1) Decreases Back Pain

Both my general practitioner and my chiropractor have informed me (and I assume their other patients) that almost all adults will suffer from back pain. Exercise, however, helps increase and improve muscle strength, endurance, flexibility, and posture, all of which help decrease and prevent back pain.

2) Reduces Risk of Injury

A fit body means a strong, healthy body, which means that body will be significantly less prone to injury.

3) Increase Range of Motion

To help lessen pain and inflammation, we need to increase range of motion by improving flexibility. This will decrease those ailments associated with arthritis.

4) Increase Functional Strength

To explain as simply as possible, exercise helps us to perform our daily activities better. If we improve strength, flexibility, endurance, and general health, then all those daily actions we make will become easier. Functional strength increase also means an increase in reflexes, but more to come on that later.

5) Prolongs Life

Not only does exercise often lead to a longer life, it also leads to a longer, healthier life. Many people live well into their golden years, but many of those also suffer from some pretty debilitating ailments and illnesses. Exercise helps to make these older years healthier so that we can better enjoy this time in our lives.

6) Improves Balance and Coordination

As I mentioned in number 4, exercise helps to increase our reflexes because as Built Lean states, “Exercise can improve your stability and also what is called your “kinesthetic awareness”. You have a better feel of where you are spatially, so you don’t knock into things at the grocery store by mistake!” In other words, exercise helps to improve how coordinated we are and how we react to actions.

7) Weight Control

If we exercise on a daily basis, we are naturally burning more calories, moving our bodies, building muscle, and using energy. All of these lead to weight control and management. If one wants to lose weight, then he or she must use more calories than he or she ingests. One way to use calories (and gain a surfeit of other benefits) is through exercise. If weight control is a goal, exercise must be a part of one’s plan.

8) Reduces Aches and Pains

So, this seems a little fishy, right? I often ache after a good jog, but that’s because I have used my muscles. This reason actually refers to the aches and pains associated with the unhealthy. Having strong, muscles and joints will prevent the aches and pains associated with sitting for too long because exercise increases the body’s ability to be comfortable in stationary positions. Exercise trains the muscles and joints to compensate when we have to sit still.

9) Lose the Hidden Fat

The hidden fat is called the visceral fat and is that fat that is internal. Regular exercise helps us to control that as well so that we are healthy inside and out.

In the final installment of this series, I will discuss the mental benefits of exercise, so stay tuned.

Image Credit: Thinkstock

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Rayshell E. Clapper is an Associate Professor of English at a rural college in Oklahoma where she teaches Creative Writing, Literature, and Composition classes. She has presented her original fiction and non-fiction at several conferences and events including: Scissortail Creative Writing Festival, Howlers and Yawpers Creativity Symposium, Southwest/Texas Pop Culture Association/American Culture Association Regional Conference, and Pop Culture Association/American Culture Association National Conference. Her publications include Cybersoleil Journal, Sugar Mule Literary Magazine, Red Dirt Anthology, Originals, and Oklahoma English Journal. Beyond her written works, she successfully created a writer's group in rural Oklahoma to support burgeoning writers. The written word is her passion, and all she experiences inspires that passion. She hopes to help inspire others through her words.

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