Exercise is an important part of living a healthy lifestyle. Unfortunately, those who are chronic dieters look at exercise as a way to negate calories and/or legitimize eating larger amounts of food. Or they “punish” themselves with a difficult workout because their eating was “bad” the night before and they need to “undo it.”
It’s unfortunate that something as beneficial and positive as exercise can have negative connotations for many people. The problem is how you choose to look at exercise.
Do you look at exercise as something you have to do as opposed to something you want to do?
When fitting in exercise becomes synonymous to fitting in housework, it turns into something stressful, instead of an activity that can take stress away. Instead, remember all the benefits it can bring to your health.
3 Reasons to Exercise Without a Focus on Weight Loss:
1. Disease Protection
Physical activity lowers your risk of many diseases. Whether it’s improving your cardiac health, protecting against various cancers, boosting your immunity or maintaining your bones and joints, the physiological effects of getting up and moving make a trip to the doctor much less likely.
2. Better Sleep
Working out on a regular basis can help you sleep better at night. Research shows that physical exertion leads to a deeper night’s sleep and you wake up the next morning feeling refreshed and restored. It might be best not to work out too close to bedtime, however, as this may prevent you from falling asleep.
3. Mood Booster
Besides the physiological effects seen, exercise boosts your mood as well. Feel-good hormones are secreted during exercise which can lift you up and make you feel better. The results you achieve from consistent exercise also raise your self-esteem and help you feel more confident to achieve your goals. Not to be minimized, exercise is also a lot of fun!
If you continue to think of exercise as a way to burn calories, then you will dread it and have trouble motivating yourself to go out for that walk or hop on the treadmill. In this case, it’s important to work on decoupling dieting and exercise by breaking the spell that diets have over you so you can learn to love moving your body, not because you have to, but because it makes you feel great.