We all know that regular physical exercise is beneficial, we’ve heard it so many times. Combine regular physical activity with a balanced diet, try to be physically active every day, and you will help yourself achieve and maintain a healthy weight balance. Identify what exercises you enjoy doing whenever you visit the gym. Set reasonable goals and stick to a workout routine to see positive results.
Individuals in their 20s should focus on engaging in exercises that promote bone growth, including dancing, running, or martial arts. Evidence has shown that you start to lose muscles in your 30s and 40s, therefore weight training is important during this period, so you can focus on cardiovascular activities. Individuals over 50 should focus on workouts that help with balance like water aerobics, lightweight activities, and stretching.
Do well to check with your doctor before taking up any new workout activities. This article will help you discover the top 5 benefits of going to the gym.
Top 5 benefits of going to the gym
#1: Exercising is a secret recipe to boost your motivation, focus, and memory.
In his book, ‘Spark’, John Ratey explained that exercising has more effects on your brain than any part of your body. Exercising is a secret recipe to boost your motivation, focus, and memory.
The reason you’re motivated after exercising is that your dopamine level is high. Your dopamine level determines your level of motivation. Studies have proved that exercising boosts your dopamine level instantly and significantly.
If you feel anxious, stressed, or depressed, it means your serotonin level is low. Exercising has a direct influence on your serotonin level. This means that the best cure for depression is to have some workout sessions.
When your norepinephrine level is low, you will struggle to stay focused. Top levels of it sharpen your retention, and low levels of it make it difficult for you to focus.
What if you can increase these three neurotransmitters with no drug? That’s exactly going to the gym will do for you. Regular exercise also boosts your memory and learning abilities. The Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor gets unleashed when our blood is pumping. Your memory will be improved if you have regular exercise. Have you imagined how your day will be if you can directly affect your mood and increase your memory and learning capacity?
Scientists say a minimum of 6 hours each week is enough to keep your neurotransmitters high throughout each day. You might decide on exercising right before work or studies because your neurotransmitters have just been unleashed and are at their highest levels at these times. This is one of the key benefits of going to the gym.
#2: Reduction in health risk factors.
Regular and physical exercise can lower your risk of heart and circulatory disease by 35%. The heat produced by your muscles when you are active increases your temperature, making you feel warmer. This causes your heart to beat faster, pumping more blood to the muscles you will be using.
Your muscles are working harder so they need more oxygen. Then you begin to breathe faster so your blood can pick up more oxygen from your lungs. Once your blood has picked up oxygen, it moves to the muscle you are using, giving them the extra oxygen they need. If you are a workout enthusiast and therefore, active regularly, more capillaries grow in the muscle you’ve been working.
So do you see why activities start to feel easier after your consistency in the gym? Getting active is great for people with diabetes. For those with type 2 diabetes, it means you have too much glucose in your blood, probably because you don’t have enough insulin. Physical activity helps you use the insulin you have. Regular exercise also allows your cells to use glucose even if you do not have insulin.
#3: Bone health improvement
Walking, jogging, running and dance are healthy exercises for bone health.
Bones are important to help us through life and it is important for us to protect it when we are young. Young people have the opportunity to take care of their bones. Bones are living tissues and they continue to remodel when they grow. It is important for young people to build a strong bone bank so that in their older years, their bone density is maintained.
Bones are important because they protect our bodies. Bones protect our organs and provide somewhere for our muscles to incline themselves to and provide calcium storage for our bodies.
Physical activity is important for all people. Elderly people should continue their exercise routine but modify the intensity of the exercise.
#4: Improves your mental health.
Exercising regularly can reduce your depression level and relieve you of your anxiety. Studies have shown that running for 15 minutes a day or walking for 1 hour can reduce the rate of major depression by 26%. Endorphins are hormones that help you relax, feel less pain, and feel more pleasure. Regular exercise allows your body to produce more endorphins.
Fitness activities in the gym like team sports encourage social interaction that boosts your moods and decreases feelings of loneliness. The more you visit the gym to exercise, the more your self-esteem increases. Your sense of self-worth will also be enhanced when you stay consistent with your workout routine.
Exercising for 30-60 minutes a day was associated with the biggest reduction in poor mental health days while exercising for over 3 hours per day was associated with worse mental health than not exercising at all. Unfortunately, more than ¼ of adults across the world do not get enough exercise.
#5: Weight loss and reduced obesity
In humans, there is a fine balance between energy intake and energy expenditure. Energy intake is in the form of food, and energy expenditure is in the form of physical activity. If energy intake exceeds energy expenditure, then net positive balance occurs.
Energy expenditure depends on a number of factors including starting body weight, basal metabolic rate, frequency of activity, intensity of activity, duration of the activity, and type of activity. For example, if an individual eats one doughnut, he or she takes in approximately 300 Kcal which is equal to the energy consumed by moderate walking for 30 to 60 minutes at 3 miles per hour.
If an individual walks for an hour, at 3 hours per hour, they will expend approximately 300 Kcal the same energy as consumed from the doughnuts. If an individual walks daily for approximately 3miles per hour, it will lead to weight loss assuming this individual does not consume extra calories.
If this habit continues for a period of 2 to 4 months, the bodyweight is reduced. Weight loss is achieved through consistent workout routines and a balanced diet. After your initial weight loss, it is important to continue your daily routine for at least 1 hour.
You will experience these five benefits and more if you make a personal decision to remain committed to your workout routine, because just as Niel Barringham said, “the grass is greener where you water it.”
Elizabeth G. Matzkin, MD Surgical Director, Women’s Musculoskeletal Health.(Feb 2018)
Mechanisms in Mechanism Inc. (March 2011)
McMaster Demystifying Medicine students Ava Oliaei, Nour Eddin Garada And Nadia Butt.