It’s no secret that I exercise multiple times a week. I exercise mostly so that I can do the things I really want to do. Like walk around a store (or a theme park) and run Agility with my dog. But there is no limit to the benefits of exercise in other areas of my life. Like mental clarity. More benefits are sleeping better, and keeping my bones and muscles strong.
Benefits of exercise to the heart
And the benefits to the heart from exercise have been proven to be limitless. A recent study from the University of Oxford with 90,000 participants showed that the risk of cardiovascular disease was lower in those who were the most active. Five years after the study participants were still benefiting from exercise.
Daily exercise is crucial for cardiovascular health, blood pressure control, weight loss and overall physical fitness. The researchers also determined that those who exercised had the healthiest BMI (body mass index), were least likely to smoke, and had lower alcohol intake. That’s not surprising. What was surprising, though, was that there was no limit to the cardiovascular benefit the participants received from exercising. “Results showed both moderate and vigorous physical activity drove down instances of cardiovascular disease.” So – keep exercising and your heart keeps getting the benefits.
Not easy to maintain the level of exercise
It’s not easy to maintain a moderate or vigorous level of exercise a few times a week, though. Just knowing the benefits of exercise is not enough to make you put on your sneakers. Just like with New Year’s resolutions: many people are fired up at the start of the year to “get fit,” and their motivation may last for a few weeks, but they lose interest after a while. They may know the benefits of working out – that’s why they start an exercise in the first place, but that’s not enough to keep them going.
Know your “why”So, as I’ve said before – know your motivator. There must be something that compels you to get on the stationary bike, or climb those stairs, or get on the mat a few times a week besides the benefits to your heart. This is especially important for healthy aging. Know what motivates you, so that you can keep exercising and reap those benefits.