Three Big Reasons to Exercise

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Patients often ask me, "Why should I exercise?"

Although there are numerous benefits to regular exercise, these benefits easily fit into three categories, which I call PMP: (1) Physiological (2) Musculoskeletal and (3) Psychological.

Taken together, PMP gives us three major reasons to take time to exercise on a routine basis. I have provided twenty-five benefits of exercise and divided them into their PMP categories to make them easy to remember, so you can see clearly why exercise is important. If you have been thinking of reasons you do not have the time to exercise, I hope that you will change your mind after you review the list below.

P: Physiological Benefits of Exercise:

1. Improved aerobic capacity.

2. Decreased body fat.

3. Improved circulation.

4. Decreased resting heart rate.

5. Decreased blood pressure.

6. Reduced cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

7. Increased muscle mass

8. Enhanced quality of sleep

9. Enhanced Immune system.

M: Musculoskeletal Benefits of Exercise:

1. Improved ease of movement.

2. Increased muscle strength and endurance.

3. Increased bone density.

4. Increased range of motion.

5. Improved balance.

6. Improved joint stability.

7. Increased flexibility.

8. Decreased risk of falls

9. Improved posture

P: Psychological Benefits of Exercise:

1. Reduction of pain.

2. Reduction of anxiety and fatigue.

3. Enhanced feeling of well-being.

4. Increased mental focus.

5. Improved self-image and self-esteem.

6. Improved mood

7. Decreased stress

If you are still convinced that you should exercise regularly, keep in mind that the right combination of exercise and nutrition can make every moment of your life better-even when you are relaxing, working, or spending time with family. Exercise and good nutrition leads to increased muscle strength and more stamina. When your body works more efficiently, you have more energy which makes it easier to perform your activities of daily living.

Moreover, the combination of good nutrition and regular exercise also reduces blood pressure and cholesterol levels, which reduce the risk of heart disease.

I urge you to make an appointment with yourself to exercise because you can gain all of these benefits by exercising three to five times per week for 30 to 60 minutes. Remember to check with your doctor before starting any exercise program, and begin to reap the Physiological, Musculoskeletal and Psychological benefits of exercising.

I hope that your increased awareness of these twenty-five benefits of exercise will encourage you to exercise on a routine basis. Start today: Creating a Better You !!

© 2011 Winifred D. Bragg, MD. All Rights Reserved

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