Why YOU Should Work Out

Life is busy. Between work, school, kids, relationships, shopping, and community events, there is a lot to keep up with in life. Each of us depends upon our body to get us from here to there yet we don’t always give it what it needs to stay healthy. Taking care of your body is a choice that has lifelong benefits. Here’s are a few reasons you should work out on a regular basis:

You will look better: The majority of people that work out do it primarily so they will look better. This is a very legitimate reason. The better we look, the better we will feel about ourselves. Looking good will increase your confidence in a variety of different settings—from this weekend’s date to tomorrow’s job interview. Looking good never hurt!

Release energy: Each of us needs an outlet of some kind. Video games and movies are good, but they don’t have the same kind of effect on your body that vigorous exercise does. All of the emotional stress we stuff into the body can be released through physical activity. This can help us feel more calm throughout the rest of the day—despite the kids wanting to be fed and the boss that is demanding more sales.

Decreased risk of disease: Some types of cancer are found more commonly in those that aren’t physically active. Those who do not engage in frequent exercise have higher blood sugar and insulin levels. This can lead to diabetes and coronary heart disease. Exercise can have a good effect on your metabolism and other body functions.

Less strength-related embarrassment: From personal experience, I can tell you that it stinks to go help a neighbor to move the piano when you have the arms of a pre-adolescent child. Although this isn’t a very scientific reason, increasing your strength can help you to perform a variety of tasks better, allowing you to go help your neighbor move the piano without fear. (It is important to note that your aim shouldn’t be to become Superman or Arnold Schwarzenegger, but to be constantly improving your strength).

Increase your flexibility: Contrary to popular belief, strength training can actually increase your flexibility. Your range of motion can actually be increased through working out each of your muscle systems on a regular basis. It may not give you the ability to do the splits, but bending down to pick up that pen you dropped shouldn’t be quite the problem it was before.

Overcome obesity: Although exercise isn’t the only component to overcoming obesity (a lot of it has to do with diet), it is a major one. Being inactive causes a lot of your muscle mass to convert into excess body fat. Unfortunately, low activity is often connected to eating more—two negative factors working against you.

Increased productivity: Everything you do takes a toll on your body. Working out increases both your physical strength and your stamina, giving you the energy you need to do more. Your increased productivity can take you places that your Nintendo never could.

 

About the Author

Stepehn Sharpe is a writer for MyCollegesandCareers.com. My Colleges and Careers can help you if you want to enroll in online master’s degree programs.

 

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Why You Need to Include Strength Training into Your Exercise Routine

Strength training.

Image via Wikipedia

Do you run for miles on the treadmill every day? Do you suffer through those cardio classes at your gym? Are you seeing the results that you are looking for? If not, it may be because you aren’t including strength training into your exercise routine. Many people, especially women, don’t pick up those weights because they are afraid they’re going to end up looking like a body builder. Well, put away those fears, because that isn’t about to happen.  However, strength training can give you the tone and definition you are looking for. It can make you look fantastic in your favourite bikini, skinny jeans or little black dress.

Cardio alone will help you lose fat, yes; but it will not shape and redefine your body. Only strength training can do that. You will also increase your metabolism – Your BMR (basal metabolic rate) increases, meaning that your body can burn fat much more efficiently. Your core will become stronger and you’ll have improved posture, greater strength and your bones will have an increased density.

So, do you need to give up your cardio routine altogether? No, absolutely not! You just need to add strength training to the workout you’re already doing. This doesn’t mean you have to spend another hour in the gym. A good strength training program can take as little as 15-20 minutes. Kettlebell workouts are becoming quite popular, because they incorporate both strength training and cardio at the same time. There are several DVD’s on the market that are quite effective.

If you’re just starting out, it’s important to use lighter weights, no more than 5 pounds. If you prefer, you can use the machines at your local gym. The machines are great for reducing the risk of injury and they will give you a good idea on proper form and posture while you’re performing the exercises.

When you are designing a routine, make sure you work opposing muscle groups; don’t just do your biceps, do you triceps as well. Work your lower body along with your upper body. This will give you a balanced physique.

Reassess your workout every four weeks; chances are you’ll need to increase your weights a bit. It’s also important to change up your routine; your body is so efficient that it gets used to the exercises, and that’s one of the reasons you hit a plateau. Change your program so that your body is always challenged.

While it’s ok to do cardio every day, it’s best to limit your strength training sessions to every other day. This gives your muscles a chance to recover in between sessions.

Eating protein with every meal will help in your strength training efforts as well. Your muscles need protein in order to develop and stay healthy. Have some almonds, organic peanut butter or other protein source with each meal. Protein shakes also make good meal replacements or mid-afternoon snacks.

When you add strength training to your overall exercise routine, you will notice a big difference in how your body looks and feels. You’ll finally have the tone and definition you’ve been looking for.

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