There’s an old saying that a body at rest tends to stay at rest, and a body in motion tends to remain in motion. This is something important to consider as we age. We all know someone who hasn’t moved much in years other than to get into the car to go to a store, or to move around from one part of the house to another.
It used to be a joke told by some that they got their exercise by getting up off the couch to go turn the channel on the television, but even that’s done from the couch these days, with the most exercise being that of pushing the “Channel Up,” or “Channel Down” button.
There are some statistics that indicate over 30% of those aged 65 and older do not participate in any exercise. Even if you’re younger than 65, consider where you are activity-wise right now. Will you be part of that 30% when you reach 65?
Did you know that if you exercise regularly, you’re helping your bones to remain healthy?
You’ve probably also heard that exercise improves coordination, strength, and balance. You’ve probably seen the television commercials about people who have fallen and can’t get up. If you want to increase your abilities to remain independent as you age, exercise is one thing you can do for the long haul.
Exercise helps regulate blood pressure, and can help your overall heart health.
And, exercise is also good for your psyche. Think back to a time when you exerted yourself in a game, a jog, or any other physical activity. Do you recall feeling exhilarated and happy or upbeat? That’s because signals are sent to your brain when you exercise (which is actually considered a “stress” since your brain doesn’t know you’re “exercising” – you could just as well be running away from a threat or fighting a threat).
These signals cause a release of chemicals that are meant to fight this “stress” – endorphins are one of these chemicals, and Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor is another one, a protein.
So, after the “threat” or “stress” is gone or past, what is left is a feeling of well-being and happiness. So, exercise is a wonderful way to combat depression or melancholy.
Once you begin feeling good about life, you will probably want those feelings to continue. So, you’ll be more inclined to exercise and become that “body in motion” instead of telling the tired old jokes about changing channels on the television.