Fitness is an overall state of being physically fit and healthy. Being fit and living healthfully involves choosing a lifestyle that includes exercising several times a week, eating healthy foods like whole grains and fresh fruits and vegetables, drinking enough water, getting enough sleep, and avoiding harmful substances like too much sugar, too much alcohol, or tobacco products. So why would you make such an all-encompassing choice? These are some of the health benefits of fitness, physical and mental.
10 Physical Benefits
First, fitness makes your body feel better. This might sound obvious, but sometimes we underestimate the significant effect’s fitness has on our physical health.
1. You will get sick less often. When you do get an illness, it will be less severe, and you will heal more quickly if you are living a fit and healthy lifestyle.
2. You will tire less easily and breath more easily; no more panting when you have to climb a flight of stairs or being worn out after a little yard or house work. You can finish what you have to do and still have energy afterward.
3. You will lower your risk of heart attacks, strokes, and high blood pressure. Exercise and a healthy lifestyle lower your cholesterol, improve your blood lipids, improve your blood pressure, and can even increase the strength of your blood vessels. If you do have a heart attack or stroke due to other factors like heredity, your chances of surviving it is improved, and you will have a better, more thorough recovery.
4. You will lower your risk of getting certain cancers. There are many things that can affect your chances of cancer, but exercise and healthy living are within your control. Why not have this risk factor well in hand?
5. Living a fit and healthy lifestyle and exercising can help you control your weight. You will be healthier no matter what weight you are at, but if you’ve been struggling, it will help. More of the weight will be made up of muscle and less will be fat.
6. If you are female, exercise can help with decreasing and controlling symptoms of menopause. It is linked with improved mood, fewer hot flashes, decreased loss of bone density.
7. Many women also find that exercise, good nutrition, and sufficient rest can improve how they feel while menstruating. They have less severe cramps, less moodiness, and an improved sense of well-being.
8. Living healthfully and exercising can decrease your risk of getting Type 2 diabetes. If you already have diabetes, exercise and living healthfully helps you keep it under control.
9. Exercising, eating well, and drinking plenty of water helps regulate your digestion. You will have less indigestion and less constipation. You will be stronger and more flexible.
10. Exercising will help you get more sleep. Remember not to exercise immediately before bed – that just keys your body up for an activity. But exercising earlier in the day will help you sleep better that night.
10 Mental Benefits
Living healthfully and exercising several times will help you feel better emotionally and mentally.
1. You will have a better sense of self-worth. You are living in a way that shows you value yourself, and you will begin to feel valued accordingly.
2. Exercise and a healthy lifestyle are strongly linked with improvement of symptoms of anxiety and depression. A short yoga session, walking your dog, spending some time gardening or dancing energetically (or whatever exercise you enjoy) can help you feel more positive, calm, and hopeful. Sufficient rest, good nutrition, and social supports are also vital for an improved mood and outlook.
3. You will feel a sense of accomplishment and pride. You did something good for yourself. You’ve completed a goal!
4. You can increase your social supports through fitness. You may make new friends who are involved in the same exercises, cooking class, or meditation group. Maybe you meet someone at yoga class, or on your regular run route, or you exchange healthy recipes in an online forum. There are a lot of social connections that you can have with others who are living fit.
5. Living healthfully improves your memory. You will recall things more easily and learn new things more readily.
6. Exercise helps your brain be more efficient and effective, and healthful living gives it the right fuel and rest for top functioning.
7. Exercising and living healthfully are linked with decreased chances of dementia and Alzheimer’s.
8. Exercise lowers your stress levels. Feeling tense? Take a brisk walk, or do a few stretches; you will feel better quickly. Regular exercise helps you keep overall levels of stress under control.
9. Exercise can help you quit smoking. When you want to light up, take a walk and breathe clean air. When tempted, do some stretches or dance some steps (several kinds of dance are excellent exercise). It will help you get through the craving, remember why you quit, and feel better about yourself.
10. Healthful living is enjoyable. When you find the exercise that is right for you, it is often fun. Learning new recipes for you healthful cooking – and getting compliments from the people who taste-test them is satisfying. Being well-rested makes your whole day go better. If your life is enjoyable, you feel happy more of the time.
Life is more fun if you are healthy! The emotional and mental benefits of fitness are just as important as the physical, whether you are attempting to lose weight, tone your body or simply feel better about yourself.
Do you incorporate fitness into your life? What are some other benefits that you have noticed? Let me know in the comments below.