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Continuing on the theme from my first post “Habits of the Healthiest”, let’s talk about exercise!
One of the most important factors in determining your overall health status is your activity level. There are many articles and studies that show the benefits of exercise on the body, mind, and mood. At the end of this post are several links in which you can read further on why we need to exercise.
I started “jogging” when I was in the fourth grade. My reasons at the time had more to do with being in a group and spending time with an adult rather than creating health, but truly it doesn’t matter what gets us going, just that we do get going, and keep going. What I realized pretty quickly at the time was that “I can do this.” It gave me something to do that made me feel good both physically and emotionally. I ran/walked several events through the end of elementary school, one of the most memorable was the “Sound to Narrows”, in Tacoma, WA.
Through my life, I have gone back to what I learned in the fourth grade. Time and again I am inspired by the stories of others or my physical need to move. I once made a promise to run a marathon to myself, I don’t remember when I did this, but it was finally accomplished in 2009, at the Portland Marathon.
I have learned from both extremes, from no exercise to vigorous training for a marathon. My current goal is to be consistent and to feel good. What helps keep me motivated are coming up with reasonable goals, tracking miles and times, social interactions with others in the running community, and looking forward to events. I am very excited that this year I get to participate in the “Hood to Coast” and the “Portland Half-Marathon” (more reasonable than a marathon for me). And I know that if “I can do this,” you can do it too. And if running isn’t your thing, something is. You just need to figure out what it is, and stick with it.
Dr. Samantha has written here about how you can get yourself exercising even when you feel like you don’t have enough time. And check out this great video about why exercise is important. You’ll love it.
But before you head over there, share your story and what keeps you going. What is your workout? What is your favorite fitness tracker? Where have you overcome your own obstacles to exercising? We look forward to hearing from you!
American Heart Association (benefits)
- Exercise and Cardiovascular Health
- Statement on Exercise: Benefits and Recommendations for Physical Activity Programs for All Americans
Exercise and your Brain.
- Exercise Affects The Brain
- Be smart, exercise your heart: exercise effects on brain and cognition
- How Exercise Could Lead to a Better Brain
- Depression and Anxiety: Exercise Eases Symptoms