Reasons to Exercise (besides weight loss)
By Cat Smiley www.whistlerfitnessvacations.com
If losing weight is your prime initiator of working out, you’ll likely give up if the weight doesn’t come off as fast as you expected. Fitness comes in all shapes and sizes…. compare yourself only to your personal progress. Although it may be natural to admire the physique of models or your colleagues size six clothing, you never know the story behind their thinness. Things aren’t always as they seem and we are all different – including our bodily metabolisms and bodily functions. Keep sight of the joys that a healthy life can bring, from being fit enough to play ball with your son, to being strong enough to move all your belongings out of your ex-boyfriends house…. on your own!
Keep your relationship with exercise in check with these 6 ‘other reasons’, from The Planet Friendly Diet
- Better Body Image Exercise promotes great body image, keeping you Happy and Healthy Focus on weight-bearing exercises, such as weight lifting, and complement your weight routine with low-impact activities such as walking or biking. Intense cardio such as sprinting, intense bike riding and kickboxing need to be fueled by extra food, as these are all high calorie-burning activities.
- Connect with your family We can walk to school with our kids, and play sport with them where possible – which will also help parents meet the recommended hour of daily exercise. Increase your families physical activity levels; plan an after dinner walk instead of watching television, buy some cheap tennis rackets and hit the ball around on the local court, shoot some basketball hoops at the school near your house. You’ll always find an activity the whole family can enjoy. Kids might complain as you try to drag them out of the house, but will no doubt thank you in the long term – the point is not to turn family exercise into a chore, but as an opportunity to feel great and have fun!
- You make better food choices Working out makes you naturally want to eat cleaner. Revise your eating habits sensibly. Do you really need that extra piece of cheese at midnight? Have you expended enough energy in your desk job to warrant a foot long sub at lunchtime? Chances are, cutting back on your daily portion sizes and bumping up your activity level could be all you need to kick start your change.
- Feeling of accomplishment Intentions often fail the first time around. The secret to achieving your goals is mapping out a realistic plan to attainment, with measured success. Be specific about what you want to achieve – for example, resolving to ‘get fit’ doesn’t really have an end point. Instead you could break it down to weekly goals: run three times a week for 30 minutes, hit the weight room three times, and walk the dog every day before work. Set yourself milestones.
- Sleep Better Exercise helps you sleep. Relaxing before you go to bed is not always easy, but a few simple things can help; drinking a cup of herbal tea instead of snacking, taking the dog for a walk around the block, avoiding computer work or anything that uses too much brain-power. Simply allow yourself to unwind. Fitness is all about keeping your body in balance, starting with a good night sleep.
- Improved Muscle Mass Exercise builds muscle, and muscles make you strong! Increased muscle mass increases metabolism.
Cat Smiley is a leading weight loss expert, and owner of Canada’s Premiere Weight Loss Retreat for Women. She is the author of The Planet Friendly Diet , 21 day boot camp for total body transformation. Cat has been named Canadian Trainer of the Year three times by the International Sports Science Association. To work with Cat, visit www.whistlerfitnessvacations.com