Exercise Doesn’t Have to Be Intense or Long
I have met a lot of people who say that they have NO time to exercise. They get up really early for work, work hard all day and then by the time they get home (with their long commute), then it is dark out, their kids need help with HW, they need to make dinner, etc.
But, here are my thoughts. If you don’t exercise at all, you will wear down your immune system, metabolism, your mood, your libido and eventually–this will all affect your relationships with family, spouse and friendships. You will be out of shape and have medical issues and this will also lead to mental health issues.
If you want to feel happy, feel good, you need to exercise to help with the production of serotonin, but you also have to eat right in order for serotonin to be produced properly. If you eat bad foods and have a bacterial imbalance in your gut, then your serotonin will be off too! I have noticed that people who don’t exercise, get sick more often, as well.
According to Livestrong, “Approximately 75 percent of this chemical is located in cells of the gut, where it regulates intestinal movements. The rest is synthesized in neurons of the brain; it’s here that serotonin influences mood. High levels are associated with an elevated mood while low levels are associated with depression. Though many neurotransmitters work in harmony to influence mood, serotonin is one of the most important. Its levels are influenced by external factors, such as sunlight, diet and exercise.” http://www.livestrong.com/article/22590-effects-exercise-serotonin-levels/
So, if you want to control your intestinal issues, mental health, your heart, blood pressure and more–and live longer and be there for your family (the ones you are killing yourself for), you have to find time, 5 days a week for at LEAST 15 minutes a day. You don’t have 15 minutes?
Walk For 15 Minutes a Day
Some think to get the full benefit of a good workout, you need to be sweating for a full 30 minutes — or longer. But with so many people struggling to find a spare 30 minutes, researchers have begun to investigate if a shorter sweat session could be just as good.
A 2011 study found when compared to sedentary people, 15 minutes a day of activity, like brisk walking can add 3 years to life expectancy, according to Reuters.
Kick It Up a Notch
Intense aerobic activity may double the years of life expectancy added by moderate exercise, according to a 2005 study. Five days a week of walking for 30 minutes led to 1.3 to 1.5 additional years, The Washington Post reported, but intense exercise, like running half an hour five days a week, resulted in almost 4 extra years.
So, instead of eating at your desk or out with people, WALK somewhere. You can even walk to get your food or coffee, but walk. If you can’t find this time at all when you are at home, then minimally, take 15 minutes a day for a brisk walk. Do it at lunch or one of your breaks at work.
My sister-in-law wears a pedometer and she counts her steps in a day. It is said that in order to be healthy, you need to step around 12,000 steps a day or more. This can be counted from just walking to your car, to your desk, to the bathroom, going around your house picking up toys. It doesn’t have to be counted all at one time, in one place.
Here is a link to a site that will show you how walking helps you lose weight and how to keep track of it for your personal goals. http://www.pbs.org/americaswalking/health/health20percentboost.html
Keep walking! In fact, I am ending todays’ blog and going right to my elliptical for an hour. But, I have done less time on it…..the idea is to do something!