There are amazing benefits to working out via training with weights and cardio, some which you may not have even known existed.
You many already know some benefits of strength training (lifting weights) and cardio, such as improved bone density; lower risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, cancer and depression; and improved sleep, libido, appetite control and stress management.
However, there are many more reasons why you should work out—reasons you may not have even come close to considering.
First of all, why you should work out can be answered in a simplistic way: This was what nature designed the human body to do.
We originated as a hunter-gatherer species. Hunter-gatherers move—swiftly and vigorously—to survive. We have the same genes and physiology that we had 50,000 years ago. Our bodies expect to move.
When a sedentary lifestyle sets in, disaster strikes, such as obesity, diabetes, heart attack, suppressed immune function, brittle bones and so much more.
It’s a contradiction to nature’s plan that humans be sedentary. So accustomed are people to an inactive lifestyle, that most people believe that exercising two hours a day is excessive.
Our ancient hunter-gatherer ancestors would laugh at this because, during their time period, two hours a day of inertia would be considered excessive!
We must follow nature’s plan; modern-day hunter-gatherers are in exceptional shape, and the big killers of industrialized peoples—heart disease, cancer and stroke—are exceedingly rare for them.
Additional benefits of why you should work out:
Improved cholesterol profile: Research (e.g., Rubinstein et al) shows that vigorous exercise raises the “good” HDL cholesterol and lowers the “bad” LDL cholesterol.
Research is mounting that strength training and cardio not only help delay or prevent “age-related” cognitive impairment, but can actually produce some reversal.
Dramatically increased self-esteem: Nothing pumps up feelings of self-worth and self-confidence like a sizzling workout.
There are several explanations for this, such as an increase in the “feel good” hormones, endorphins. However, just simply knowing that your body moved some heavy weights or ran a course is enough to spike feelings of self-confidence.
Improved ability to fight off an attacker or escape with fewer injuries: A physically fit, strong body is better able to defend itself against an assault, and escape as well—just like early man had to defend himself all the time from predators and run from them.
A fit, strong body is also more likely to survive a car crash, and even experience only minor injuries, than is an untrained body. These benefits of working out are rarely considered amongst sedentary people.
Exercise and more daily movement can reduce and sometimes eliminate back pain, the nation’s No. 1 nonfatal health problem. In fact, even weight lifting can create back pain relief.
There is absolutely no reason why people should not work out; the benefits are overwhelming; inactivity kills; inertia tramples self-confidence and never produces a becoming reflection in the mirror.
There is no age limit to exercising, and this includes the two major exercise types: weight-bearing and cardio routines. We can learn a lot from our lean, robust primitive ancestors.
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