You Don’t Need to Exercise For Two Hours a Day…

Lack of activity destroys the good condition of every human being, while movement and methodical physical exercise save it and preserve it.


Ironically, personal development books, blogs, presentations, short stories, epic novels, stage shows, musicals and whatever other form personal-development comes in these days, don’t really focus on the entire spectrum of personal development.  I have read many-a-book on personal development that will talk ad-nauseam about the mental side of things– How to be positive, how to conquer fear, how to be self-disciplined, but almost none of them talk about the importance of physical exercise.

Happiness isn’t all in your mind.  A lot of it is– in fact I would say 50% – 60% of it is (A statistic that I made up just now and am basing on absolutely nothing other than personal experience.) while the remaining 40% – 50%   is actually comprised of your physical well-being.  Health is certainly an enormous factor, but more specifically the field that is more neglected is physical fitness and the incorporation of exercise into your daily life.

It’s hard to explain to someone who isn’t getting enough exercise how getting exercise will not only improve your physical state but also your mental state, but I will endeavour to do so anyway.

The physical benefits

Even just walking for a little bit everyday will do a lot for your fitness and for your overall health.  You don’t need to be doing a grueling workout routine for 45 minutes a day or running a marathon in order to see a difference.  Just walking for 30 minutes a day will do wonders for your health.

Walking keeps fat away, improves circulation, keeps your heart strong and keeps your muscles active.  The best part about walking is that it’s realtively easy to incorporate into your daily routine.  Need to go to the store for some groceries?  Walk it.  You’ll be getting the exercise you need during the day without even having to break your schedule.

If you don’t like the idea of walking to get your groceries since you’ll have to carry them home, walk somewhere simple.  Walk to grab a coffee, or walk to the library.  Even just walk around the neighbourhood listening to music if you own a portable music player.

Being someone who used to sit around all day (On the couch, in a computer chair, at a desk, at a table.  You name it, I was sitting there.) I was rather amazed at how much better I felt physically when I started to exercise regularly.  I still sit around a lot, but the 30 minutes a day that I spend getting some physical activity makes me feel less like a rotting log and more like a human being with these amazing appendages known as legs.

It’s hard to appropriately explain the physical benefits without having something to compare them to though.

When I wasn’t getting any exercise at all, when I finally did manage to get up from my plethora of comfortable seating arrangements, I found my stamina was pathetic.  When I was a kid I could run a mile like I was taking a Sunday stroll– fifteen years later I was winded after a couple of flights of stairs.

Not only that, my legs would hurt after two more flights, and when I finally went back to my well-adored sitting position I felt like I was going to die of a heart attack.  We’re talking a truly pathetic sight here.

Lucky for me I have always been blessed with a metabolism that does more than it’s fair share of push-ups every morning and I’ve never had a problem with my weight.  That said, others are not so fortunate.  If you have a regular-speed metabolism in all likeliness a sedentary life-style such as I used to lead will have you turning into a balloon in no time flat.

Believe it or not, even walking 30 minutes a day well help enormously with that.  You won’t notice it at first, and you may feel like simply walking won’t do very much for you but it’s actually quite the contrary.  If you are consistent in your exercise within a month I can guarantee you that you’ll notice the difference.

If that isn’t enough, regular exercise actually increases your energy level, though you would logically presume that it would do the opposite.  Many people who suffer from chronic fatigue are tired all the time because they don’t get enough exercise.  When you’re not regularly active, your body doesn’t bother firing up it’s engine so to speak, and so when you’re sitting around all day you feel really tired.

Unfortunately, most people then assume that something is wrong with them and that the last thing they need to do is exercise.  Exercise makes you tired, right?

Not always.  When you exercise regularly, your body gets used to it and starts all those systems that give you energy throughout the day as soon as you wake up in the morning.

The mental benefits

Exercise doesn’t need to be an excruciating experience.  You may find that taking 30 minutes out of your day to just walk outside with your music going is a nice break from the stresses of everyday life.  It gives you time to breathe and to get away from the rather enormous amount of stress work, school or whatever else you have going on in your life right now puts on you.

Regular exercise also just makes you feel good. I’m sure it’s a genetic throwback from when we were still eking it out in the wilds with all sorts of dangers and no guarantee of a meal for the day, but human bodies crave regular exercise.  Feeding the craving garners rewards, making you feel good in your mind as well as in your body.

Plus, who doesn’t want to be in good shape?  Who doesn’t want to be physically fit?  No one, as far as I know.  It feels great to be able to say: “I’m active everyday.”, “I take the time to take care of myself.”  These days exercise is taking less and less of a focus in our daily lives and unless you purposefully take the time out to get some physical activity, it’s doubtful that it will even happen.

Finally, (Now this may shock you…) exercising can actually be fun.  I’ve started taking walks every morning before the world really starts rolling for the day and I really enjoy it.  It’s time I can take for myself, I feel good because I’m exercising, I get fresh air and get to be out in a natural environment as opposed to couped up indoors all the time and for the rest of the day I have an abundance of energy.  I really look forward to it, and it’s a great alternative to sitting around on the computer or watching the T.V.

Take 30 minutes a day and walk.  Or run, or bike or do push-ups, squats, use weights, jump rope, do cartwheels, whatever you want.  Whatever would be the most fun for you, do it.  It doesn’t need to be strenuous or extremely hard work, and you can usually find ways to weave it into what is already a busy schedule.  It will pay off for you.  You’ll be surprised at how much you better you feel on a day-to-day basis, both physically and mentally.

One Response to “You Don’t Need to Exercise For Two Hours a Day…”

  1. [...] See the original post here: The Importance of Exercise | Implicate Evolution [...]

  2. Travis says:

    I’m with you here, Thomas.

    Exercise and meditation were THE biggest factors in my personal development, and they remain so today. I sometimes feel like I led two lives: the one where I exercised every day, and the one where I didn’t. I guess everyone has different needs; I’ve found that as a “grown up” ADD kid, my needs are higher than others. The key is to experiment and find out what your needs are in the first place.

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