It should come as no surprise that daily exercise can make a huge impact in our lives. But is it necessary to spend hours at the gym or on the trail to achieve optimal health? While being a gym rat will help you achieve results faster, it’s actually not a requirement. Plus, hours of gym time often don’t work into a busy professional’s schedule. What, then, is the answer?
Daily Exercise Has Many Benefits
There’s no doubt at all that daily exercise is awesome for the mind, body, and soul. It can help you stay within your weight window, be strong, and feel energized for your busy lifestyle. There are also some other benefits you may not have considered.
Exercise has been proven to improve mood while decreasing feelings of depression, anxiety, and stress. That’s because exercise gives your endorphins a boost, and those little guys help you feel happier. They also reduce stress and pain.
Get Stronger Bones
Resistance training, or weight lifting, is hugely beneficial for strengthening muscles. That part’s kind of obvious. But did you now it’s equally as important for bone strength? We naturally lose bone mass as we age, and weight training helps increase bone density. That means a smaller chance of developing osteoporosis.
Improve Your Health
Regular exercise has been proven to prevent or improve a variety of health problems, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and even cancer. Plus, that daily boost to your routine will increase your immune response, minimizing your risk of getting a cold while bouncing back faster if you do get sick.
How to Get 20 Minutes of Daily Exercise
Even for the busiest people, there are plenty of ways to sneak in a little bit of exercise during the day.
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Park farther from your destination and walk.
- Keep dumbbells in your office to do some weight training when it’s slow.
- Go for a walk outside or around your office building at lunch.
- Walk the dog, or kids, at least two times a day.
If you can carve out 20 minutes at the gym, here’s a simple routine that will help you reap all of the benefits of daily exercise:
- Three days a week (such as Monday, Wednesday, and Friday), do a full-body workout consisting of 2–3 sets of 10–12 reps for all major body parts: shoulders, biceps, triceps, chest, back, abs, legs, and calves. (Here’s a good guide to get you started.)
- Three days a week (maybe Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday), do 20 minutes on the treadmill, stair-stepper, or elliptical. Make it more challenging by throwing in hills or intervals; you can also increase the resistance.
- On Sundays, wake up and do 20 minutes of yoga and full-body stretching to get you ready for the new week.
If Exercise Seems Like Too Much
If even thinking about incorporating a 20-minute daily exercise routine in your life sounds like too much for you, there might be other factors at play. Chronic fatigue syndrome, irritable bowel syndrome, and other autoimmune issues can make it next to impossible to work out on a regular basis. But there is hope.
Contact Rich Jacobs at My Health Detective to schedule your initial consultation, during which time we’ll determine what’s keeping you from getting all of the benefits of daily exercise and holding you back from your full potential.
You have nothing to lose and everything to gain, so get going!
Rich Jacobs is a Board Certified Integrative and Functional Nutrition Practitioner who specializes in resolving gut, insomnia, low libido, fatigue and fat issues. He uses a holistic approach and functional lab work to identify root causes such as hormone imbalances or gut pathogens that could be impacting your health.