Benefits of Exercise

About Exercise

There are numerous benefits to exercise. Everyone wants to feel better, have more energy and look their best. It comes as no surprise that one of the best ways to achieve this goal is by participating in regular physical activity. Daily exercise can help you have a healthy heart and body, better self-esteem, and can help you live a longer, happier life.

Let’s start by taking a Fitness Test by the Mayo Clinic to check your fitness awareness!

Benefits of Exercise include:

Increases Cardiovascular Strength:

When you are not even thinking about it your heart is pumping blood with oxygen all day long to all the different organs and limbs of your body. When you begin exercising you are using energy and breathing faster, so your heart has to work harder to get more blood to all parts of your body. Your heart rate goes up and your temperature rises because you and your heart are working hard. With an increase in heart rate, your heart is pumping faster and harder. While this may seem like it is straining your heart, it is actually helping to strengthen your heart. It can be compared to your heart lifting weights and your heart muscle becomes stronger.

So how does this benefit you? Strengthening your heart will decrease your chance of having a heart attack or heart disease. This is due not only to strengthening your heart, but by making the vessels, that carry the blood within your heart, more fit. This, along with a more energized heart, will reduce your blood pressure. High blood pressure is a risk for Type II Diabetes and heart disease. Exercise will decrease numerous risks for health problems.

Decrease Your Risk for Osteoporosis:

While your heart muscle is strengthened, the muscles and bones within your entire body are also strengthened. Lifting weights is a great way to help strengthen your bones and prevent osteoporosis, where the bones become fragile and brittle. Regular weight-bearing exercise can help keep your bones strong. As you get older, you will see the benefits of exercise pay off. You will have fewer falls and better mobility.

Helps Maintain a Healthy Body Weight:

Exercising 30 minutes a day on most days of the week will help you maintain weight better. Lifting weights can also help you maintain weight as well as help you tone muscles, making you stronger and more fit. For those who want to do more than maintain weight, exercise is important. In order to lose weight you will most likely need to exercise more than 30 minutes a day and may need to decrease the amount of foods you eat, or change to more healthy food choices.

If you just had a baby, exercise, along with a healthy diet, can help you return to pre-pregnancy weight. Always check with your doctor when beginning to exercise again after delivery.

Gives You a Chance to Go Outside:

Exercising gives you a chance to explore your community! You can go to your favorite park to exercise or you can play outside with your children. Even on those cool days, you can bundle up in layers and enjoy the outdoors. Fresh air can help rejuvenate your senses and well-being. Being outdoors also gives you time to think and meditate.

Improves Your Self-confidence:

Exercise will help you feel better because your body will become healthier. Also, keeping an exercise routine takes time and effort. If you can do it, you will increase your self-confidence in other aspects of life because you have already been able to achieve discipline through following an exercise program. Your self-image will improve due to a better looking and better feeling you.

Helps You Sleep Better:

A good night’s sleep helps to rejuvenate your body for the next day. Exercising at least three hours before bedtime will help to relax your body and give you a more restful sleep. If you have had sleeping problems in the past, exercise can help decrease some of those problems.

Reduces Depression and Stress:

Exercise helps fights depression and stress by activating your neurotransmitters. Neurotransmitters affect the way you react to daily problems and decisions by how they are balanced. Exercise will help to balance your neurotransmitters. It can also give you a bit of time to clear your mind of daily worries and problems. Exercise also stimulates the neurotransmitters that are in charge of feelings of well-being, called endorphins. So if you had a stressful day, try exercising for 30 minutes to feel better.

Perfect to Do with Family:

Kids have tons of energy. Why not burn some of extra calories with them? Take the kids to the park and play sports together. You might go to the community pool during the summer and enjoy swimming with your children. This can also strengthen the bond between you and your children and help you have a healthier and happier family.

It’s Fun!

The great thing about exercise is that there are so many options of what you can do! If you want to walk or jog, go for it. However, for some people, team sports are more fun. There are so many activities to choose from all seasons of the year. Try following some seasonal exercise tips for winter, spring, summer or fall.

Other Benefits of Exercise

  • Boost energy
  • Increase muscle strength
  • Delay or prevent chronic disease
  • Lower cholesterol

Exercise is not without its risks and this or any other exercise program may result in injury. To reduce the risk of injury in your case, consult your doctor before beginning any exercise program. The advice presented is in no way intended as a substitute for medical consultation. The Utah County Health Department/WIC Program disclaim any liability from and in connection with this program. As with any exercise program, if at any point during your workout you begin to feel faint, dizzy, or have physical discomfort, you should stop immediately and consult a physician.

North County WIC Clinic

599 South 500 East
American Fork, UT 84003

801-851-7329 (fax)

Provo WIC Clinic

151 South University Ave Ste 2100
Provo, UT 84601

801-851-7303 (fax)

Orem WIC Clinic

816 N 980 W
Orem, UT 84057

801-851-7346 (fax)

South County WIC Clinic

910 E 100 N, #125
Payson, UT 84651

801-465-0911 (fax)