Self Care: Why exercise?

Self-care is all about improving ourselves, having more energy, and being more satisfied with the events happening in and around us.

Self-care involves a daily routine to achieve these goals by implementing the three core methods of self-care. When used together, these methods can lead to a better well-being and happiness within oneself.

One of these core components to taking care of ourselves is exercise.

The Toronto Challenge 5K 1K 2014 on Sunday June 8 2014 throough the streets of downtown Toronto Ontario. The race is a charity event in support of community programs for seniors. Brian Carson The Learning Curve Photography
Photo Credit: thelearningcurvedotca via Compfight cc

Exercise is not just beneficial physically, but also mentally. By engaging in vigorous exercise, which is defined as “heart racing and body sweating” for 20 to 60 minutes a week.

Exercise increases cardiovascular activity, burns extra calories, but most importantly, it releases endorphins in the brain, which have a role in reducing stress and managing depression, as well as decreases the stress hormones in the body, like cortisol.

Exercise can also be a great oulet for frustrations and anger (like martial arts or weight training). It can take your mind off of problems and troubling thoughts, just by placing you in a different environment and forcing you to focus on your deep breathing.

Research has shown that even minimal exercise is better than none, so even starting with walking the dog around the block a few times can increase your heart rate and get you moving! (Plus, you get to spend time with your furry friend!)  Also, it can be really beneficial to start an exercise routine with friends which allows you to motivate each other day-to-day.

It is proven that it takes 21+ days to make an activity a routine, so summer is the perfect time to start getting moving, especially outside! Once you have done moderate exercise for a few weeks, you can increase the intensity, which yields even more benefits, and more feelings of happiness!

Some easy ways to start exercising are: cycling, jogging, Zumba, swimming, and dancing.

Yoga is also another tool to use which incorporates small meditation, increased flexibility and learning about yourself (inside or outside).

Overall, for motivation, remember the benefits of exercise:

  • getting better sleep
  • thinking more clearly
  • having more energy for the day
  • speed up your metabolism
  • improved cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugars

Source: PsychCentral

Source: Still Standing Magazine

What are some of your favorite ways to exercise? Have you figured out a way to get it into your daily routine? Are you encouraging your adolescents or young adults to stay active? Let us know below!

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