- Exercise & Fitness
How Exercise Can Improve Your Life
How Exercise Can Improve Your Life
Unless you are a fitness aficionado, exercise is probably something you have to force yourself into. Finding time, energy, and motivation are the major culprits that keep you from getting into a regular exercise routine. However, most people are more likely to begin exercising if they first understand the benefits. There are the physical benefits that are readily noticeable. There are also the unseen health benefits to physical exercise. Knowing that there is more to exercise than just the seen effects may give you incentive to keep on track with your chosen regimen.
Choosing An Exercise Program
First, if you are not already on an exercise program, you will need to choose one. Consult your personal physician, he/she can guide you into a program that will yield the greatest benefits to you. Another excellent way to find your perfect program is through Ayurveda. Ayurveda is an ancient system of medicine originating from India. In this system, there are three doshas or body/person types: vata, pitta, and kapha. Ayurveda holds that each person is made up of characteristics from each dosha group, but one is predominant. That dominant dosha is the one you want to fashion your exercise regimen for.
How Dosha In Ayurveda Creates Your Exercise Program
Vata: If this is your predominant dosha you are creative, imaginative, and learn quickly. However, you also forget easily. You walk and talk quickly. Your life is somewhat chaotic, often you have disconnecting thoughts lacking focus. Short bursts of energy that leave you exhausted. Though you are fun to be with and enjoy your life, you may tend to be moody and impulsive. If you are a vata, you are likely already thin. Your skin and hair will be dry.
Vatas need gentle movements. Yoga or tai chi should make up the bulk of your exercise program. Adding in a little dance aerobics for your heart and weights for strength would suit this type also.
Pitta: You are self confident, organized, and focused. You also tend to become angry when under stress. You like to be the leader. Your skin is fair, may sunburn easily. Your hair is generally straight and thin and will normally be blond or red. You are passionate, romantic, and love to surround yourself with beauty. If pitta is your predominate dosha, you are probably of medium build. You probably gain a few too many pounds over the winter season but are not necessarily obese.
Pittas are energetic by nature and need energetic, vigorous exercise. Your program should consist of aerobics for inside workouts. Since you love the outdoors, rugged trail hikes will put you at your best.
Kapha: You are the calm, easygoing type. You forgive easily and are not judgmental of others. Physically you are strong, mentally you have an amazing memory. You are probably that ’rock’, that stable person that others gravitate to. You are the best friend of many people. There is a softness to your hair, eyes, and skin. Kaphas tend to be possessive with people and things. You are of larger build.
Kaphas require a more dynamic exercise program. Running, swimming, hiking and dancing are all excellent choices for the strong kaphas.
Health Benefits of Exercise
Benefits of Exercise
Though the benefits of exercise are numerous, we have listed a few here to get you motivated:
Energy boost. Regular exercise not only boosts your energy for more exercise but also for everyday activities. You will notice that you are able to get more tasks done and done well after only a short time of exercising. Living life well requires energy and a daily exercise routine is just the ticket for increasing energy levels.
Mental enhancement. Exercise is the perfect way to blow off steam after a day of work and stress. Physical activity stimulates the brain to produce the chemicals that make you feel happier. You will become less irritable, more relaxed, and calm. A 1996 report from the Surgeon General on physical activity states that, compared to physically inactive people, those who are physically active had a more positive outlook. They had increased self-esteem and were less likely to be or become depressed.
Weight management. Most people want to ‘lose a few pounds', exercise boosts your dieting efforts greatly. A regular routine of physical activity burns calories and may help curb your appetite so you eat less.
Provides vital organ strength. The American Heart Association says that, ‘Physical inactivity is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke and is linked to cardiovascular mortality.‘ Yikes! Now there is some incentive to get up and get moving! Exercise improves the circulation of the blood through the body. The better the circulation, the more oxygen and nutrients are delivered to your lungs, liver, kidneys, and heart. That promotes good internal organ health and keeps everything functioning at peak performance.
Builds strength in muscles, joints, and bones. As you continue in your exercise routine, your muscles are strengthened. When your muscles are strong they keep your bones and joints aligned, reducing aches and pains, especially back pain.
Promotes better sleep. You cannot argue that a good night's sleep makes you feel better. Regular exercise aids restful, deep sleep. If you exercise in the afternoon, you will be able to fall asleep faster at bedtime. About five hours after vigorous exercise there is a natural decrease in energy levels. This decrease may help you to sleep deeper and healthier than before.
Boosts your immune system. Regular exercise wakes up all of your inside body parts. They will reward you by doing the job they were designed to do. Exercise raises good cholesterol (HDL) and lowers bad cholesterol (LDL) insuring a smooth blood flow by lowering the risk of plaque build up in the blood stream. If the blood is flowing and all your parts are working efficiently, your immune system will keep illnesses, both small and large, at bay.
The benefits of regular physical activity are numerous. One of the best things about exercise is that it knows no race, gender, or age. Everyone can reap the benefits of physical activity.
Get up and get moving today for your mind, body, and spirit.