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How Doing Exercise Makes You Younger

How Doing Exercise Makes You Younger

Can doing exercise regularly make you younger? The answer from all the health experts seems to be a resounding yes. We will look at why this is true, but for the moment, reflect on the advantages of staving off old age. Just think, you could have a firmer, fitter body, healthy glowing skin, stronger bones, and a lower risk of depression. But more than half of all adults in the USA are not getting enough exercise, according to a CDC report.

Some experts are now saying that those who exercise with regularity could live for 10 years longer than couch potatoes. So, a longer life is a great bonus, but even better is the fact that you are less likely to get diabetes, cancer, or have a heart attack. Talk about a fountain of youth!

Exercise helps your circulation

What happens when you go jogging or do your aerobic workout at the gym? The blood vessels in your muscles respond to the increased pressure by getting larger and they can take on more oxygenated blood. The process helps to divert the blood supply to less essential organs such as the stomach and kidneys. The working muscles are now getting the maximum benefit. The heart muscle which is doing most of the donkey work will become more efficient and help to optimize blood circulation.

The benefits of an improved circulation system will help to keep blood pressure levels normal, tone the muscles and also the lungs. Any type of exercise such as walking, cycling, dancing, yoga or swimming will do the trick.

How exercise promotes cell growth

As we age, our cell renewal process inevitably slows down. Telomeres (from the Greek telos ‘end’ and meros ‘part’) are an essential part of the repetitive DNA which protects the end of the chromosomes from deterioration. Someone has said it is rather like having a plastic end to the shoelace which prevents it from unravelling. The longer the telomeres, the more efficient is cell creation.

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Researchers found that couch potatoes had shorter telomeres than those who regularly exercised. The study involved over 2,000 sets of twins and confirmed that those who exercised were likely to remain more youthful and live longer.

Exercise keeps the brain in great condition

An essential aspect of staying young is to have a healthy, active brain. Once you start exercising, the brain begins to feel the benefit of the increased blood flow which helps to keep the cells healthy. Most people after exercise feel more focused and children have done better on tests.

One test, conducted by the University of Minnesota followed 2,700 men and women for over 25 years. Those who had done sport in their teens were scoring better on mental tests when they reached their fifties.

Helping your brain cell production is a great way to ward off Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and other neurodegenerative diseases.

Exercise gives you glowing skin

Most people associate glowing, radiant skin with facelifts and miraculous creams. They do not realize that when you exercise, the revved up circulation is getting essential oxygen and other nutrients to the skin. The muscles are toned so that the skin is less likely to sag. In addition, your own collagen which keeps the skin compact and firm is also regenerated. Some studies have shown that it may also help to reduce acne.

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Do not forget to use an effective sunblock if you like to exercise in the sun. Experts agree that in order to get your essential daily dose of Vitamin D, you just need to stay in sunlight for fifteen minutes. Do not worry about the sunblock interfering with this process. Dermatologists at the King’s College, London, Institute of Dermatology have reassured us on this.

Exercise helps your bone density

“It takes skill to fall on flat surfaces” – Anon

Who wants old bones which are brittle and break when you fall? Preserving strong bones is the best way to avoid fractures. The best type of exercise to help bones stay strong are those that involve some weight resistance, such as:

* Walking

* Hiking

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* Weight lifting

* Jogging

* Walking up the stairs

* Dancing

* Tennis.

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Exercise helps to prevent depression

When you do any exercise, the good mood endorphins such as serotonin and dopamine are released. They help to put you in a good mood. It is no accident that you always feel more cheerful and upbeat after doing exercise.

Exercise can make you feel better and lessen depression symptoms. Scientists are not exactly sure why this is the case but there are countless examples of its efficacy.

Now, you know why everybody is talking about exercise. It really can help you stay younger and enjoy a longer life. You have no excuse now!

Featured photo credit: Younger/Daniel Oines via flickr.com

More by this author

Robert Locke

Author of Ziger the Tiger Stories, a health enthusiast specializing in relationships, life improvement and mental health.

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Last Updated on January 14, 2019

7 Ways To Make Exercise Fun For Everyone

7 Ways To Make Exercise Fun For Everyone

From Atkins to Paleo to eating gluten-free despite not being one of the rare few people afflicted with celiac disease, fad diets are everywhere. It drives me crazy because I believe these diets do more harm than good. Your body is made up of a variety of vitamins, nutrients, and minerals, and losing weight healthily isn’t possible when you fill your body with unnecessary synthetic plastics, sugars, and powders. There’s no easy button in life.

What you need to do is exercise, which isn’t very appealing to many people. Workouts take work, so there’s already a stigma involved in going to the gym. Starting a healthy workout regimen becomes easier when you make it fun. If you want to live long and prosper, get off the couch and try these methods to turn your workout into a playout.

1. Take the scenic route.

Walking is an easy way to transition to a healthy lifestyle, and it’s free. Not only do you burn calories (check out this calculator for how many calories you burn based on your weight), but you see the world in a different way. Hiking in nature is great if you have access to it, but don’t let living in an urban area deter you from walking.

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Whenever I’m creatively stuck I get my head straight by walking a couple of miles. It’s also how I discover new paths, meet new people, and stumble upon hole-in-the-wall spots I never would have found otherwise. You could drive past the same place every day and never appreciate the beauty, nor even notice it’s there.

2. Distract yourself.

No matter what exercise routine you choose, use the time to meditate. You may wonder how marathon runners are able to put so many miles on their bodies. It’s because the pain from running that you avoid is something they’ve learned to harness to enter a transcendental state. If you’re aware of the benefits of meditation and exercise but don’t have time to do both, you can combine them, killing two birds with one healthy stone.

3. Listen to music or podcasts.

There are few experiences in life more pleasurable than turning up the music and drowning out the world around you. With so many podcasts and music apps available on your smartphone, you can easily find entertainment options perfectly suited to your personal tastes. Never worry what people may think of you when working out;instead, crank up the volume and get lost in your own world. You’ll be in shape before you know it.

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4. Bring a friend.

Some people can’t go anywhere alone. While I highly recommend dining out and seeing a movie in a theater alone, having company while exercising is very helpful. It allows you to pace yourself with someone else, and gives you a coach to motivate and push harder than you may have on your own.

Many exercises are safer when done with a friend, and some sports can only be played with another person. Involving others in your goals can mean the difference between success and failure. Just remember to continue exercising if the other person flakes, or they’ll be in control of your health.

5. Accessorize.

There are accessories that can make exercise easier, and sometimes buying a new toy can add some much-needed fun to your routine. With apps like RunKeeper and Nike+, your smartphone is capable of tracking your vitals and progress. Wrist weights can add a new dimension to your workout, and, if you exercise at night, a headlamp can help you see what’s in front of you so you don’t trip.

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For urban runners and power-walkers, one of the biggest obstacles is other people. It’s difficult to get in your meditative zone and enjoy your music when you constantly have to dodge people. To resolve this vexing issue, Runbell, a startup in Tokyo, has developed the runner’s version of the bicycle bell. With this lightweight brass bell warning people you’re approaching from behind, you’re free to maintain your transcendental state while continuing your workout. Head to their Kickstarter campaign to pledge your support.

6. Compete.

A little healthy competition can motivate you to push yourself further in your workout regimen. There are apps like Zombies, Run! which turns your run into a video game, and MyFitnessPal which allows you to connect with others in the exercise community. Whether you’re directly competing with a friend, an online community, or against your previous self, setting goals is the key to reaching them. Running with no destination can feel like an impossible task, and it’s easy to get distracted.

7. Relax.

The best part about exercising is how much you enjoy the downtime. If you think laying on your couch all day is enjoyable, it has nothing on that hour you spend as a couch potato after a rigorous workout. Jay-Z said it best, “in order to experience joy, you need pain.” The harder you push yourself while exercising, the better you’ll feel when you’re relaxing.

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With that said, don’t relax too much, or it loses the effect. It’s okay to indulge every so often. Treat yourself to some junk food you’re craving, imbibe a drink here and there, and spend a day vegging out on your couch. Staying healthy doesn’t have to be torture. Just turn down when you can and dedicate some time to better the health of your body. You only get one.

Featured photo credit: tpsdave via pixabay.com

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