What is the Importance of Exercise?

One of the most important things you can do for your health is to exercise regularly. Most people think that exercise is only for people that want to lose weight. While exercise will help people lose weight, it has many other benefits.

The benefits of regular exercise should make any one WANT to exercise regularly. A regular exercise routine could be life-changing for some people. Our overall health and wellness is at the utmost when we are exercising consistently.

About half of all American adults have at least one preventable chronic disease. Preventable through regular exercise. People who are physically active for about 150 minutes a week have a 33% lower risk of mortality from all causes.

What is the importance of exercise? without exercise, people are more susceptible to chronic diseases such as some cancers, diabetes type 2, cardiovascular disease, decreased energy levels, and physical weakness. To think… all we have to do is exercise regularly and we will increase our chances of living longer and decrease our risks of getting a chronic disease. 

Here, I will discuss the importance of regular exercise by showing you the many health benefits that exercise has. I will cover how regular exercise directly affects the 8 dimensions of wellness. You will learn why everyone out there should be doing some type of regular exercise.

The Eight (8) Dimensions of Wellness

The 8 Dimensions of Wellness

There are 8 dimensions of wellness that one must balance to have optimal health. A regular exercise schedule helps balance these dimensions so that you are functioning in optimal health.

If you aren’t already increasing your physical activity through a regular exercise regimen, now may be the time to start. Let’s discuss these 8 dimensions and how exercise affects each dimension together and separately.

1. Emotional

This has to do with the ability to express your feelings, and how to cope with life. It also includes creating satisfying relationships. When we exercise our brain is producing endorphins. These are hormones that give you that “feel good” feeling. Your brain also produces dopamine, which elevates your pleasure sensors.

Regular exercise decreases stress hormones, such as cortisol. Cortisol is not good for us. Over time, you will gain self-confidence and a feeling of accomplishment. So, we see how regular exercise brings about emotional wellness.

2. Environmental

In this dimension, we make sure that we are always safe in our surroundings and we also strive to create an environment that is enriching in some way. By exercising regularly we are creating an environment that promotes good habits which lead to good wellness.

 3. Intellectual

Here is where we recognize our creative abilities and put them to work. In this dimension, we are learning new skills and then teaching them to others.

Our ability to understand what we are being taught happens here. Studies show that regular exercise improves cognitive functioning abilities, such as learning, memory, attentional processes, executive processes, creativity, common sense, and general knowledge, and it “de-fogs” the brain. Judgment skills are also enhanced. Many of these benefits also help us in other wellness dimensions.

4. Physical

This dimension is about acknowledging the need for physical activity, diet, nutrition, and sleep. The physical benefits of regular exercise are abundant. Our physical well-being is greatly enhanced by regular exercise. Doing cardio, muscle training, and bone-strengthening exercises at a moderately intense level can slow down the loss of bone density that happens as we age.

Exercise helps you lose weight, and it helps you maintain an ideal weight. Exercising burns calories. The more intense the workout, the more calories you burn. Regular exercise helps prevent or manage health problems. These include stroke, metabolic syndrome, high blood pressure, type-2 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis, some types of cancer, arthritis, cardiovascular disease, etc…

Energy levels increase and physical strength improves over time, as you continue to exercise regularly. Exercise also leads to an improved digestive system. 

5. Occupational                                                                                         

workout ladies

This has to do with getting satisfaction from our work.  We all want to be successful in our work. Well, exercising increases productivity.

We already learned that regular exercise helps us learn faster and retain what we’ve learned. We learned how regular exercise decreases stress, treats depression, enhances our mood, and it “de-fogs” our brain. All of this leads to greater productivity. Especially in the workplace. 

6. Spiritual

Here, we are focused on developing our true purpose in life and understanding the meaning of life. Exercise decreases stress, clears our mind, releases the dopamine and endorphins that give us heightened pleasure and happiness, improves our ability to concentrate, and gives us self-confidence.

With that said, exercise plays a part in your spiritual wellness. As we reap the benefits of exercise, we are more ready to connect with our inner selves and become grounded in our spiritual wellness.

7. Social

This dimension involves feeling like you fit in and having a support system. Our levels of self-confidence increase as we continue exercising consistently. We become more productive and more focused. Our judgment skills are enhanced, too. With this in mind, we can see how exercise will help us to connect with others socially and feel confident that we fit in.

8. Financial

All of the benefits of regular exercise fit into this dimension, too. When the other 7 dimensions are all balanced, our financial wellness is balanced too. The benefits of regular exercise extend to all 8 dimensions of wellness.

Different Types of Exercise

If you have any health conditions consult with your doctor before beginning any exercise program. You have so many choices when thinking about the exercises you should do.

First, make a list of your fitness goals. Then choose exercises that will help you reach your goals. For example, My fitness goals are to lose 10 pounds and to gain strength in my legs. I can’t do any high impact because I have a bad knee. I will choose a cardio exercise.

I have been doing dance fitness at home for about 6 months. I love dance fitness and look forward to my workouts. I dance for 60 minutes. Then I do 15 minutes of weight training with 10lb. hand weights. I hold them while I do squats and lunges. 3 sets of each. Then I do bicep curls and tricep presses. 3 sets for each. I also do chest and back exercises.

The weight training I do every other day gives my muscles a chance to repair. I do some full-body stretches and 10 minutes of abdominal work, and I am done. 

I will be posting some specifics about different exercises that you can do and I will be helping you to create your at-home workout routine next. Look for my next blog in a couple of days.

Any questions? Leave them in the comments section.

Maria

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10 thoughts on “What is the Importance of Exercise?”

  1. I totally agree with everything you say in this article. Being physically active really seems to be the cure-all for ailments. I have been on a health kick lately, not only with exercise but with diet. I can’t tell you how much younger and more vibrant I feel after losing a few pounds through swimming and changing my diet. If everyone were to take your advise, I know our health care providers would not be as overworked as they are.

    Thanks for posting a great article!

    Nina

    Reply
    • It’s so great that you are exercising and making healthy food choices. Unfortunately, many people don’t exercise and won’t take my advice. If only they could experience the benefits, then many would exercise reguylarly. I love how I feel when I am exercising regularly. My energy level is higher and I sleep better at night. I can control my weight through exercise and making healthy food choices. I do need to take my own advice when it comes to cutting out the sweets. LOL…but not really funny…
      Thank you for your comment
      Maria

      Reply
  2. Thanks for sharing!
    Exercise is very important for our health–it helps us stay fit and healthy, and it can even help us live longer.

    I try to exercise as much as I can, even if it’s just for a few minutes. It makes me feel good physically and mentally, and it’s a great way to start my day.

    Cheers,
    Femi.

    Reply
    • Thank you, Femi. You are right. Regular exercise does help us live longer. Been working out since I was in high school. Whew…that was a really long time ago. Thankfully, working out regularly slows down the aging process too. Most people like to work out in the mornings. It helps to burn calories throughout the day. I mostly work out in the late afternoon. Want to start doing it in the mornings, but I never do, even when I tell myself that I will.
      Glad to hear you exercise. Doing a little exercise is better than no exercise. Keep at it.

      Reply
  3. I have to admit that regular exercise does help a lot for better emotion control. Whenever I feel so stressed at work, I exercise to let them all out. After sweating a lot, I feel better and dare to face all challenges tomorrow in the office. I vouch for what you mentioned in this article because exercise helps!

    Reply
    • Hi Matt. I’m so glad that you are able to use exercise as a tool to combat stress. You are doing what many people choose not to do. Some people even say they are too stressed to work out. That is when they need to work out the most. Thanks for your comment
      Maria

      Reply

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