Exercise for Life
How much would you pay for medication that would decrease your risk of heart disease by 50%, strokes by 30%, diabetes by 50%, Alzheimer’s disease by 50%, and decrease the risk of 13 different types of cancer? This medication also helps you lose weight, improves your fitness, improves your strength and the only side effect is that it makes you happier. I guess this is something you would be interested in and you would have put a high price on this medication. The fact is that this medication is readily available, and it doesn’t cost a thing, all you need to do is invest some of your time.
- Preventable chronic diseases are currently responsible for over 70% of illness and injury.
- Preventable chronic diseases cause 60% of deaths worldwide.
- Physical inactivity & poor nutrition was estimated to cause 28% of deaths.
Even though the benefit of exercise is well documented and is not a well-kept secret almost 70% of the population doesn’t meet the minimum physical activity requirements. These minimum requirements are 5 bouts of 30 min of moderate exercise per week. However, these requirements do not give good guidance on what type of exercise to perform. Different types of exercise give different types of benefits for your health. It is important to complete various exercises to gain these different benefits.
Types of Exercise
Aerobic eg swimming, walking, cycling
– Benefits include stronger heart & lungs, more efficient heart, improved circulation, increased happy endorphins.
Resistance eg pushups, squats, weights
– Benefits include increased strength, increased size of muscles, better posture, greater support of joints, increased bone density.
Flexibility eg stretching, yoga
– Benefits include improved flexibility and range of motion, improved movement, reduced risk of injury, improved posture, improved neurological pathways.
One type of exercise isn’t greater than another and the best exercise routines will incorporate all types of exercise.
Starting an exercise program
Starting your exercise regime and changing your lifestyle is the hardest part of a healthy lifestyle. It is always easier to say “I’ll start tomorrow” but we have a couple of tips to help.
- Have a plan – have a set day, time and place to exercise
- Exercise with others – other people can help keep you motivated
- Chose enjoyable exercises – find exercise that you can have fun with
- Use professionals to give you guidance – ask for help to get you started
As we get older our health becomes more important. If we wish to get the most out of life we need to exercise. No other intervention will improve our quality of life while simultaneously reducing the risk of virtually all chronic diseases.