10 Reasons to Get Active This Year!

  • Making healthy lifestyle choices is one of the best ways to take control of your life back, even when you have asthma. Getting more active is one of the best ways to adopt a healthier lifestyle. Here are some reasons to get active this year:


    1. It will help your heart get stronger and more efficient. You've heard of use it or lose it? Well, when your heart never has to work very hard, because all you do is sit on the couch watching TV, your heart gets lazy. It doesn't really know how to work hard, because you don't put many demands on it. So then when you do ask it to work hard, it struggles. But when you are active every day, your heart learns to function more efficiently.

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    2. It will make your muscles and bones stronger. Just as with your heart, if you don't use your muscles and bones much, they get weaker. But living an active life will help strengthen your muscles, encourage bone growth and strength and make you stronger overall.


    3. It will improve your mental health. Studies have shown that exercise releases chemicals in your brain called endorphins. Endorphins give you a strong sense of well being.


    4. It will help you lose weight, if you need to, or maintain a healthy weight. Activity burns calories and that helps with weight control. If you're active, even if you sometimes eat more than you should or eat an unhealthy food, it will probably have little effect on your overall weight.


    5. You'll have better flexibility and coordination. This goes along with No. 2 above. When your muscles and bones are stronger and more flexible, you'll be better coordinated and that helps you avoid injury. It also helps you recover more quickly from any injuries you might sustain.


    6. You'll sleep better. Experts recommend we get seven to eight hours of sleep every night. When we sleep, our bodies rest and recharge. The more active you are, the easier it will be to go to sleep each night and to stay asleep.


    7. You'll feel better about yourself and have higher self esteem. When you're active, you just feel better and you also start to look better. You might have that healthy glow, or start to shed pounds. You might just be proud that you've been able to be active, possibly for the first time in your life. And all those things help you feel more confident and believe in yourself more.


    8. You'll have more energy. You might think that being active will wear you out and make you feel more tired. That may be true if you overdo it. But if you balance your activity with enough rest, you're going to find that you actually have more energy to do things with your family and friends, to be more productive at work or with home projects, and more.


    9. Your blood glucose levels and blood cholesterol levels should drop. Regular exercise helps the body get rid of excess glucose (sugar) in the blood, which can help people who have diabetes or prediabetes. It should also help reduce the levels of "bad" cholesterol, which will benefit your heart and blood pressure.


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    10. It can help reduce your risk for cancer and other diseases. For example, studies showed that women 40 and younger who exercised four or more hours each week during their prime childbearing years cut their risk of developing breast cancer by half.


    So make a decision to get more active this year... you'll be glad you did!

Published On: April 05, 2010