Let’s be honest: we all work out for many reasons, and one of those BIG reasons is to look good. We drag ourselves out of bed for a 5 a.m. workout (because when else will we find the time) and pack yet another salad to work to avoid those tempting doughnuts you know will be there. Especially during the spring and summer seasons, we’re always working to improve our bodies so that we are confident wearing those shorts or catching some sun on the beach. And while all of that is great, at Full Pedal, we love to celebrate our bodies at any stage they’re at! Coming in to get your sweat on is definitely useful to losing those extra pounds, but exercise benefits your body in more ways than that.
Slows the Aging Process
As you get older, your body slowly begins to breakdown. If you’re not careful you’ll begin to really feel it. From loss of bone density to aching joints, your body won’t feel like it did when you were in your 20s (or 30s or 40s, for that matter). Regular exercise keeps your body limber, mobile, and strong.
Exercising can help your body down on a cellular level, too. Your skeletal muscles become more insulin resistant as you get older, and exercise can reverse this. Endurance exercise (aka some sweet Full Pedal sweatin’) can prevent age-related deterioration of mitochondrial respiratory capacity and can boost your body’s ability to make more young healthy mitochondria. Essentially, your body’s ability to grow cells improves and are much stronger and healthier when you’re exercising regularly!
Brain Power Boost
It has been scientifically proven that exercise boosts your cognitive function, which means you’re more likely to have a better memory, be more alert, and have faster reactivity. Even just exercising a mere 2 hours total a week has proven to substantially increase brain function over the span of your life – not just right after your workout.
Plus, exercise is proven to decrease your risk for brain degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Exercise increases blood flow (and therefore the flood of oxygen and nutrients), which is vital for brain function. There are still more studies being done on this topic, but results are definitely in exercise’s favor!
Along the same lines as cognitive function, regular physical activity is proven to boost your mood! You know that feeling: you come into class a little cranky from your workday, but you leave feeling refreshed and unbothered. There’s a reason for that! Exercise releases endorphins throughout your body, which is the mood-boosting hormone. It can help relieve stress, anxiety, and depression. If you think about it, that really boosts your overall quality of life, too!
Stronger Immune System
Just 20 minutes of physical activity a day can strengthen your immune system, which will definitely come in handy during cold & flu season! Because exercise can often have long-term anti-inflammatory effects on your body & can give a boost to disease-fighting cells, you’re helping your overall health and wellbeing. (However, it is important to note that too much exercise can have the opposite effect, so listen to your body and know when a rest day is more important than pushing your boundaries!)
Many of us start out on a health journey looking to lose weight, but there are so many other amazing benefits to moving your body than your appearance! While these are only a few of those benefits, this makes us want to get on the bike ASAP to reap the benefits. Book your bikes for the week now to keep your body in balance and healthy (and looking good, too!).