IT HURTS SO GOOD
If you’ve ever slacked off and stopped exercising for months (or years) you know that your body may yell at you when you return to working out. So you may stop because it hurts. But guess what – it’s supposed to hurt! Not screaming pain of course, but burning sensations and achy muscles are often a sign that you’re doing it right. The good news is that you don’t need much, and it will hurt less when you get at it more often. Check it out!
NO PAIN, NO GAIN
Our bodies are remarkable works of art and engineering. Everything we ingest, digest and experience is in a constant feedback loop with the other parts of our bodies. When it comes to exercise, this feedback loop can help you live a longer, healthier and even happier life.
Here’s how it works for weight loss.
There is some truth to the fact that to weigh less all you need to do is “eat less, move more.” After all, a 200 pound man who is 30% body fat uses 1,743 calories per day just staying alive. So it makes sense that this man could just exercise a little more and eat a little less.
The man could also create a positive feedback loop. A little more movement generates a little weight loss success, which generates the “will” to move a little more. What most people don’t know, is how little that “move more” needs to be. It turns out that exercise doesn’t need to take hours. It simply needs to happen.
The Benefits of Exercise
Whether you’re working toward weight loss, or just general health, the benefits of exercise are scientifically proven. Consider these benefits of exercise. You will …
- Be happier
- Boost your confidence
- Get sick less often
- Have better posture
- Have better sex
- Have more energy
- Improve your memory
- Live longer
- Sleep better
According to the National Institutes of Health, anti-depressant, anti-anxiety and mood enhancing effects all accompany regular exercise. Now that we’re all in agreement that exercise is a great thing to do, how do you make sure you do it?
Exercise Tips for Anyone
Change your mindset
In your calendar change “should exercise” to “will exercise.” This is what “being intentional” is all about.
We made up this word, but consider combo-sizing a way to time your exercise to something else that you love to do. For example, hop on the treadmill while you watch your favorite sit-com and watch the time fly by.
Keep it short
A half hour of interval training (high intensity combined with low intensity or muscle work) can be worth more than one-hour of intense working out on an elliptical, stair climber or treadmill.
Make it a routine
We stick with habits, so why not make a new one? Maybe every Monday morning is “Weights Before Work.” Perhaps every Friday after work is a de-stress bike ride with family. Better yet – make ½ hour of every day your sacrosanct exercise time.
This is the fun tip. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Park in the far corner of the parking lot. Walk to the post office. Small choices can add up to have the same benefit as a full workout if chosen on a regular basis.
Whether you are beginning a new exercise habit, or increasing your movement time, it is common to feel sore and achy after exercising – even after a ½ hour workout. Your sore muscles are known as delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) and can also occur when you change your type of workout, or increase the duration.
Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) is normal. It’s just your body’s way of saying, “thank you.”