12 Surprising Benefits Of Exercise

Exercise has become a big part of many people’s life.

It’s now a must if you want to maintain a healthy life in a world full of junk food.

The most surprising thing about exercise is the fact that it is slowly becoming an industry on its own, fitness experts are springing up daily and are garnering serious following on social media platforms.

Before I go into the details on the surprising benefits of exercise, let me tell you a story of how exercise saved the life of a friend.

A couple of years ago, my friend was diagnosed with a heart condition. Although his parents were doing well for themselves, they still couldn’t afford the 12 million naira the doctors were asking for in order to fly him to Saudi Arabia.

My parents, family, friends all came together and we still couldn’t pull off 12 million. This really demoralized my friend who was virtually living in the hospital while his mates like me, were in school at that time.

I remember on one faithful day when I visited him.

He asked me, “Manuel, do you think I am going to die?” I was speechless for some seconds. It dawned on me that even though we all avoided that line of thought, it was a possibility.

I smiled at him, “If you die, we will come & eat rice” I joked and we laughed really hard. 😀 

However, when I got home that day I was very sad, I couldn’t imagine losing my best friend. So I went into my parents’ room and told them what my friend said to me at the hospital. I asked them if there was no other alternative than traveling to Saudi Arabia for surgery.

The next day, my mom contacted her doctor friend who practiced in Australia. He laughed and recommended a well monitored and supervised exercise. Surgery wasn’t really necessary since his condition wasn’t that bad.

He, however, required that a medical report be sent to him so he could confirm his diagnosis.

Six months later, my friend was better under the care of a paid physiotherapist. The joy that his family had when the final X-ray scan showed that my friend was finally free was indescribable.

To date, I will never forget that question my friend asked me. One lesson – I’ll never undermine the power of exercise.

You must be wondering what the benefits of exercising are apart from helping to save my friend’s life.

Well, you have landed on your jackpot page because I will be sharing the details on the 12 surprising benefits of exercise, and they include:

1. Exercise Boosts Your IQ

Yes, exercise can make you smarter. Exercise not only gives you those abs on your lower abdomen but also gives you some abs up in your brain too.

In 2011, scientific American submitted research explaining how exercise can really help improve the IQ of an individual.

So if you want to start going to the gym, or you are already registered in a gym, you are about to get one massive brainpower.

2. Exercise Improves Your Mood

If you are on the temperamental side, pay close attention to this surprising benefit of exercise. Exercise has a positive effect on ADHD or depressed individuals.

It also helps to calm the tempers of highly aggressive people. Just like boxing, exercise can be a very good outlet to let out your emotional burdens or grief.

It is also a good therapy for temperamental people to learn to control their anger from time to time.

3. Exercise Battles Cancer

Just like my friend’s illness, exercise battles other illnesses like cancer. Exercise doesn’t only give you that perfect outside, but a perfect inside as well.

For some time now, scientists have suggested exercise as a natural way to ward off cancer. They have even recommended that cancer survivors engage in exercises to reduce the likelihood of a reoccurrence.

Generally, exercise is good to strengthen the immune system and to even prevent these illnesses before they occur. So why not try some exercises today?

You may never know, exercise may do the trick that illness drugs couldn’t cure.

4. Exercise Boosts Your Confidence

Exercise can help raise your self esteem and confidence. Once I started going to the gym, I found a side of me that was able to talk to anybody with confidence.

Let’s not talk about the girls I could now boldly walk up too and ask for numbers.  😉

Exercise can be good therapy for people that are battling self-worth or low-esteem issues. There are so many things that could cause a decline in self-esteem, however, exercise and results can help build your esteem.

5. Exercise Builds Relationships

This is one of my favorites because I made a lot of good friends at the gym. Exercise really helps you to meet new and good people. One of the best things about meeting friends at the gym is that they will motivate you, and you will do the same for them.

The gym is full of motivated individuals who will stop at nothing to get the body they want, believe me when I say you want to be close to people like this.

These are people that will end up staying in your life for a long time, reminding you of what hard work means and the reward of dedication, commitment, and persistence.

6. Exercise Helps Relieve Stress

Despite what you may think, exercise actually helps to relieve stress. If you are the type that works so hard during the week, a little exercise on Saturday mornings could really help you relieve the stress of work and also keep you fit.

Most of us have day jobs that require us to sit in a chair for hours. This is very unhealthy as you can begin to develop cramps or arthritis around your knee cap.

The best solution for this is to exercise at the end of the week. In addition, exercise can also help you strengthen your immune system to prevent a health break down and to keep you productive.

7. Exercise Reduces Anxiety

Exercise is a great stress reliever as I mentioned earlier. What’s more? Well, exercise can help reduce anxiety and develop physical and mental strength. Exercise can help take your mind away from worries faster than any hard drug.

Imagine the feeling of your legs hitting the ground or the airbrushing your face. These elements are enough to take your mind off whatever worries you might be facing.

Not to talk of the fact that it is a legal, and healthy alternative to hard drugs.

8. Exercise Helps Reduce PTSD (Post-traumatic stress disorder)

PTSD is a disorder that often affects people who witnessed a terrifying event or a victim of a terrifying or horrific accident. According to research, about 90% of people who experience terrifying events face this problem.

PTSD attacks can be triggered by certain things and can last for months, years or even a person’s lifetime if not treated properly.

The triggers of this terrible memory are usually unique to different people, but most times seeing a similar occurrence can trigger these memories.

Exercise has been recommended as part of the treatment for PTSD. It helps victims to take their minds of such memories and instead focus on the present.

Exercise helps to develop your mental health, and help victims focus on the present when something triggers the memory of these events back into their head.

Read: How to design a home or office for success

9. Exercise Helps Skin Health

This is one of the advantages of exercise that many people have been sleeping on.

According to dermatologists, exercise is a good way of excreting dead cells from the skin through sweating.

It also improves blood circulation to the skin surface to eliminate wrinkles and to give you that soft glowing skin you desire.

10. Exercise Saves You Money

Oh yes. Exercise can help you save a lot of money in the form of transport fare. Saving up that transport fare and deciding to walk the distance isn’t just a brilliant economic move, it is also a healthy move as well.

Many of us are used to taking cabs for even the shortest distance, however, a better option would be to trek, save the transportation fare and also do some exercise. That’s killing three birds with one stone.

This is especially for people who have very tight schedules that won’t permit them to visit the gym, they can make up for this by walking certain distances instead of calling a cab.

11. Exercise Helps Reduce The Risk of Dementia in the Old

Doctors have recommended exercise as a good measure to help reduce the risk of dementia in the old. Exercise can help prevent Alzheimer’s disease if you are able to do at least 152 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise every day.

In case you do not know what Alzheimer’s disease is, I will give a brief explanation through another story below.

Ten years ago when I was still very little, my grand uncle used to come visit us from time to time. But anytime he comes over, my father would take him out somewhere. One day a very sad incident occurred. My grand-uncle Nelson was trying to cook in the kitchen & I offered to help him.

He looked at me strangely and suddenly screamed at me while asking who I was. It was scary because I had never seen him like that before. He practically told me to get out of his house. I was dumbfounded.

Fortunately, my father was around that day and immediately started trying to convince uncle Nelson. He kept repeating that it was his grand-nephew which made him start crying in my presence.

My father explained to me that he was losing part of his memory, and it was getting worse that’s why they usually go to the hospital.

Alzheimer’s disease is characterized by severe memory loss that can be very disheartening to the person suffering from it and people close or around him/her.

Therefore, next time you are going to jog, kindly take your elderly out with you. It is important that they keep blood flowing to their brains.

Read: Elderly needs and wants that should be met

12. Exercise Improves Physical Strength

This is one of the most obvious and widely known advantages of exercise. Exercise can give you that killer hot body you have always wanted. The abs and everything come as a reward of dedicated and committed visits to the gym.

Personally, I prefer the mental health benefits of exercise to the physical benefits. However, this is just my own opinion and yours might be different.

It is also important that I point this out on this article, it is important to have a spotter when doing your weight lifting or other professional or complicated exercises.

This is to prevent the risk of accidents occurring in the gym. A lot of rookie bodybuilders do not understand that they need someone close by at all times especially when they are lifting weights.

You never know, you might have a muscle pull or something bad that will require someone to help you out.

Conclusion

As you can see, exercise is a major cure for almost any type of disease or mental health issues you might think of. However, it is important to take professional advice when doing these exercises.

As a person between the ages of 50-80, you shouldn’t be doing heavy exercising, a simple jog every day is enough to keep your body well in shape and combat any type of sickness that comes your way.

At Explicit Success, we understand how important it is to maintain both physical and mental health in such a diverse, competitive and dynamic world. Hence, you have the surprising benefits of exercise to help your body and your mind achieve health and peace.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Post Author: Chibuike Nwogbo

Nwogbo Chibuike is a student of Electronics and Computer engineering at Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka. He started writing at the age of 10 by learning new things and writing about what he has learnt. Specifically, he likes the feeling of creating another world through writing. He is also a dedicated Christian.

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