9 Powerful Benefits to Making This One Change
If there was one change you could make that would positively impact every other area of your life, would you be willing to make the change? Would you be willing to commit 30 minutes at least 5 times a week if you knew it would make you more productive?
I know – life is moving fast, sometimes way too fast! I feel it too. It can be tough to keep up with home and work responsibilities, not to mention staying connected to other people. The first two things we cut out of our schedule are spending time with God and exercising – perhaps two of the most important things in our day!
Attempting to do life without exercise it is like driving a vehicle on bald tires. Sure, you will get where you are going – most of the time – but you are perpetually putting yourself and those in your vehicle at risk. In fact, you are at risk long before your tires are bald. Even half worn tires greatly increase the chances of hydroplaning on wet roads.
Bald tires are more likely to blow out, especially at high speeds and it makes stopping more difficult. Bald tires compromise the handling increasing the potential for an accident.
Simply replacing worn tires can greatly enhance your driving experience and avoid costly incidents. The same is true with exercise. Who knew skipping exercise was living so dangerously!
Need a few more reasons squeeze in that 30 minute exercise time at least five times a week? Consider the following about exercise:
1. Sharpens your mind
If you want to work more efficiently, exercise! It sharpens your mind, making it easier to learn new things, improving your memory, and making you more alert. Exercise also increases concentration and stretches your mental stamina. Studies show that regular exercise can even help prevent cognitive decline. I have to tell you, the older I get, the more of a perk that is to me!
2. Lowers stress, anxiety, and depression
Stress, anxiety, and depression negatively affect your life and work. Exercise is a drug free way to decrease the effects of all three. If you suffer from any of the three – you will want to make an effort to regularly include exercise into your life.
3. Boosts your energy
Energy produces energy. We often think about it backwards and don’t exercise because we don’t have the energy to do it. That’s when we need to exercise the most. Even a quick 30 minutes can give you the jump start you need to do what needs to get done. And if you are approaching your “to do” list with energy, your tasks will get done in less time.
4. Improves the quality of your sleep
Just about every other person I have talked to recently has been dealing with sleep challenges. Either they are struggling to get to sleep, struggling to stay asleep, or waking up in the wee hours unable to get back to sleep. That lack of sleep has an impact on your work as well as the other areas of your life. While not a good idea to work out right before going to bed, making time to exercise at some point during the day will positively impact your quality of sleep so that you can wake up feeling rested and ready to rock your day!
5. Is a healthy choice
The saying “use it or lose it” applies to exercise for sure! The truth is that your strength, flexibility, and endurance all hinge on how active you are. If your lifestyle is sedentary, it will greatly affect your health. In addition, regularly exercising can provide these health benefits:
- Helps you maintain a healthy weight
- Keeps your heart and lungs healthy
- Boosts your HDL – the good cholesterol and lowers your bad cholesterol
- Helps prevent stroke, arthritis, osteoporosis and type 2 diabetes
- Decreases back pain
- Lowers the chance of cancer
- Lowers blood pressure
- Just make you feel better!
6. Enhances creativity
Some of my best ideas have come to me in the middle of working out! When your body is busy and working hard, it allows your brain to work in a different and more creative way. Need to solve a problem or feeling a little stuck? Take a break, exercise, and discover the difference a little movement can have on your ability to be creative!
7. Lifts your mood
Exercise sets off those happy endorphins that have a wonderful mood-lifting affect. Even if you don’t enjoy exercising, you will enjoy the way you feel afterwards making it worthwhile. The benefits don’t stop there – exercise positively affects how you feel about your appearance, boosts your confidence, and improves your self-esteem. Pretty sweet side benefits if you ask me!
8. It’s fun!
In life, there seem to be people who love to work out and those who don’t. If you are in the don’t love it category, I would challenge you to rethink that – exercising doesn’t have to be running until you are ready to lose your lunch or doing so many push-ups that your shoulders ache for days. Simply making time to move in a way that makes you happy is exercise. That can include things like walking or hiking with a friend, dancing, roller blading, yoga, or Pilates; really the options are endless! Keep experimenting until you find a few ways to work out that you absolutely love and look forward to.
9. Forces you to prioritize
If you are going to make space in your life to include exercise, you will need to make some changes. The very first change you are going to have to make is prioritizing what’s really important in your life and work right now. That’s not easy – but it will motivate you to let go of the unnecessary things that are stealing your time. Prioritizing will move you more towards balance and a happier more productive way of life. That’s a great big bonus!
How about you? How much risk are you putting yourself at? Are your tires completely bald – you are skipping exercise altogether? Or are your tires half worn – your exercise is inconsistent at best? Which of the benefits that exercise offers would be most attractive to you in this season of life?