The Importance Of Physical Activity
Working out regularly, or at least engaging in physical activity on a consistent basis, is more important for your health and well-being than you might think. Here are some of the benefits that regular physical activity can bring:
- Maintains your weight or helps you lose weight, depending on your goals
- Makes you feel happier as well as more confident
- Helps you to sleep better
- Improves your memory
- Helps to control your blood pressure
- Lowers bad cholesterol and raises good cholesterol
Most of us know the benefits of working out, so why don’t we do it? Here are some common excuses for not being physically active and how you can overcome these challenges:
It looks too hard
Physical activity does not need to be challenging. Depending on your current fitness level, you can start by walking at least ten minutes a day and build up from there. If you have a pre-existing health condition, make sure to talk with your doctor about what workouts or types of activity would work best for you.
It takes too long to see results
While you’re not going to see changes in your physical appearance overnight, you will be able to notice some immediate benefits. For example, check your blood pressure before and after you work out, and you’ll most likely see a lower number. And you will probably sleep better at night.
Working out is boring
It doesn’t have to be. There are many different ways to be active, and many of them wouldn’t be classified as exercise. Look for something you enjoy doing such as gardening, yoga or walking. Make sure you enjoy doing the activity so you will stick with it.
It’s too expensive
You don’t have to go to a gym to exercise. Go for a walk or a jog, dance to your favorite music or choose from a vast array of free workout videos online.
I don’t have the time
Finding time to work out can be a major problem. Try to find ways to accumulate physical activity throughout your day. Do things like taking the stairs, walking to lunch or taking a lap around your building every hour. Getting in some physical activity each day is better than nothing.
A plan makes all the difference in actually doing what you say you will do. Here are some ways to create a workout plan that works for you:
Pick a goal that’s clear and realistic and one you can control. For example, jogging or walking every day for 15 minutes is a clear goal that you have control over. A goal of losing 10 pounds is not a clear goal or one that you have control over.
Work out with a friend
Exercising with someone not only makes it more enjoyable, but it holds you accountable when you know someone is counting on you to show up.
Build it in
Schedule your physical activity and try not to go more than two days without being active. When physical activity becomes part of your daily routine you are more likely to stick to it.
Just Remember, our bodies were made to move and we feel better when we do. Engaging in at least 30 minutes of physical activity a day can help us to maintain our weight, control our blood sugar and even improve our overall mood. Engaging in some type of physical activity each day is better than nothing. Make sure to start small and find what works for you. Consistency is key when it comes to working out. Also, check with your doctor before starting any new or more difficult activity.
Weekly Health Tips are brought to you by UCF Health, the College of Medicine’s physician practice. Offering primary and specialty care under one roof, UCF Health treats patients age 16 and up in primary care and age 18 and up for specialty care. Most major insurance plans are accepted. Two locations are now open: the original in East Orlando at Quadrangle and University boulevards just blocks from the main UCF campus, and the newest one in Medical City at Narcoossee Road and Tavistock Lakes Boulevard. Information for both facilities can be found at UCFHealth.com, or call (407) 266-DOCS to schedule an appointment.