We’ve all heard the saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” But it turns out that there may be an even more effective form of preventative medicine: exercise. That’s right; movement is medicine. So why should we get up and get moving? Let’s explore the many ways that exercise can benefit us physically, mentally, and emotionally.
Movement is Medicine
Have you heard the saying “movement is medicine” before? We say it all the time at Rock Solid Fitness. But what exactly does that mean?
It means movement, whether exercise or just regular activity, has a positive, healing effect on your body, just like pharmaceutical medicine. But using movement as medicine (when you can) avoids the potentially harmful side effects of many medications.
Physical Benefits of Exercise
When it comes to our physical health, exercise has been shown to be one of the most effective forms of preventative care. Just 30 minutes of physical activity each day can help reduce blood pressure, improve heart health, lower bad cholesterol levels, increase good cholesterol levels, boost energy levels, and reduce body fat. Additionally, studies have also found that regular physical activity can strengthen bones and muscles and improve joint flexibility and mobility.
And plenty of research shows that movement (including weight training) helps your body protect itself from disease processes in the future.
Movement is Medicine: How Strength Training Improves Your Health
There is no doubt that strength training can be an invaluable form of medicine. Not only does strength training promote strength, mobility, and balance, but it also increases metabolism, boosts emotional well-being, and contributes to improving heart health. While strength training can vary from person to person depending on their goals and abilities, for those seeking natural ways of bettering their physical and mental health, strength training should definitely be part of the equation.
A study by a team of Australian researchers studied whether resistance training (like we do at Rock Solid Fitness) can improve memory and reasoning in people with mild cognitive impairment, which is often a precursor to dementia.
The researchers recruited 68 women and 32 men ages 55 through 86, all of whom had mild cognitive impairment, and randomly assigned them to two groups. One group did weight training twice a week for six months, lifting 80% of the maximum amount they could. The other did stretching exercises.
Exercise: The Unbeatable Medicine
All participants were given cognitive tests at the beginning and end of the study and 1 year after they had finished the study. The group that did weight training scored significantly higher at the end of the study than at the beginning and still showed those gains 12 months later. The gains in test scores were also greatest for those who had the greatest gains in strength. The scores of the group who performed stretching exercises declined somewhat.
A natural reaction for someone with aches or pains is to completely avoid using that sore area of the body. However, movement promotes healing by increasing blood flow, which gets rid of inflammation and brings in the body’s healing agents. Avoiding movement to an area of the body further causes stiffness and does not assist the healing process.
Next time you have aches or have an acute injury, think about scheduling your workout instead of skipping it. You will heal quicker and get back to business – and just might improve your memory and help your future cognitive function.
Mental Benefits of Exercise
Now let’s take a look at how exercise can impact our mental health. Research suggests that regular physical activity can help reduce stress levels by releasing endorphins—chemicals in the brain that make you feel happier and less anxious. It can also help improve concentration and focus by increasing oxygen flow to the brain. And finally, it can also boost self-esteem by helping individuals achieve their fitness goals or simply feel better in their own skin.
Emotional Benefits of Exercise
When it comes to emotional well-being, exercise plays an important role as well. Studies have found that regular physical activity helps people become more aware of their bodies—allowing them to better understand how they are feeling both physically and emotionally—which can lead to greater feelings of control over one’s emotions. Additionally, exercising with friends or family members often strengthens relationships while providing a sense of community which leads to increased feelings of belongingness.
Movement is Medicine!
Watch our CEO, Patty Durell, explain it here! Working out is hard, especially when you have to juggle work, studies, family, & body pain…not to mention the unexpected LIFE throws at you.
All in all, movement is medicine! With countless benefits ranging from improved physical health to increased emotional well-being, exercise is truly one of the best forms of preventative care available today!
We help busy people look, feel and function better in only 30 minutes twice a week. Working out is hard, especially when you have to juggle work, studies, family, & body pain…not to mention the unexpected LIFE throws at you. Our CEO Patty Durell and her husband, Dave, began their careers in physical therapy and came to understand first-hand how significantly people can improve the quality of their lives through safe, individualized strength training programs. Since its inception in 2012, Rock Solid Fitness has helped hundreds of individuals feel great, reclaim their health, and finally do what they love most with the extra time and strength they’ve gained. Ready to reclaim your health and get REAL fitness results?
Looking for a Dunedin Gym, Clearwater Gym or Palm Harbor Gym?
Whether you’re looking for a Dunedin gym or a Clearwater gym near you, our convenient location on 580 (just off Belcher) means that whichever neighborhood you call home, you won’t have to go out of your way to get your strength training workout in. Rock Solid Fitness has everything you need to meet your fitness goals. We’ve got all the latest equipment, and our knowledgeable staff is always happy to help you get the most out of your workout. So come on in and see what Rock Solid Fitness can do for you! Ready to reclaim your health and get REAL fitness results? Contact us today to get your free training session.
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