By Michael Jjingo
It's an unfortunate truth that often when we’re in need of a workout, we're least motivated to actually get active! The hardest thing about exercise is to start. Once you are doing regular physical exercises, the hardest thing is to stop. “Those who think they have no time for bodily exercise will sooner or later have to find time for illness,” Edward Stanley, the former UK Prime Minister, once said.
Many of our peers have gotten the high BP hit. Being active has proven precious for us, as we aim to reverse non-communicable diseases. Our physical activity has entailed walking, jogging, aerobics, running, gym etc. Having hit the prehypertensive stage, we had to devise solutions for this. Regular exercises continue to boost our energy levels and enhance our moods. This comes with many other powerful health benefits, including a reduced risk of chronic disease. Exercise could be any movement that makes our muscles work and requires our body to burn calories. For us, exercises have helped us with weight loss. Since regular exercise increases our metabolic rate, burning more calories, thus helping us lose weight.
Well, exercises are not only crucial to supporting a healthy metabolism but also burn more calories per day. They help us to maintain our muscle mass and weight loss. With regular exercises, we have improved our work mood and decreased anxiety and stress. Exercise increases the production of hormones known to help produce positive feelings and reduce the perception of pain Interestingly; it doesn’t matter how intense your workout is. It has benefited our psychology and keeps away negative feelings. Certainly, exercises have been a real energy booster for us. And let’s not forget the fantastic heart and lung health benefits of exercise. Brisk walking or any strenuous activity boosts the cardiovascular system and thus improves lung health, which significantly betters our energy levels. As we move, our heart pumps more blood, delivering more oxygen to the working muscles. We are sure that Exercises are supporting us in building and maintaining strong muscles and bones. As we hit the “4th floor”, we tend to lose muscle mass and function, which leads to an increased risk of injury. Regular physical activity reduces this muscle loss and maintains strength as we age.
Noteworthy, exercises are reducing the risk of chronic, noncommunicable diseases like diabetes and hypertension, resulting from our reduced cholesterol levels. Participating in regular exercises has greatly lowered our BP by 10-28 mmHG. Daily physical activity has been key to our maintaining a healthy weight and reducing the risk of chronic disease. Our skins have always had a stress impact. Stress normally occurs when our body’s antioxidant defenses cannot completely repair the cell damage. Since exercises stimulate blood flow and induce skin cell adaptations, they delay the appearance of skin aging.
Exercises provide antioxidants and promote blood flow, which can protect our skin. Exercises have improved our brain function, memory, and thinking skills. Comparing with the period before we engaged regular exercises, our attention span, level and genre of thinking, pedigree, and thought processes are much better. With high BP, the memory function was struggling to retain plus retrieve the received information, which has been reversed by regular exercises. To begin with, our heart rate is better, promoting the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain.
Exercises have stimulated the production of hormones that enhance the growth of brain cells. Our attention and concentration span is much better. Regular exercises, for sure, improve blood flow to the brain and help brain health and memory. Regular exercising has helped us relax and sleep better. In regard to sleep quality, the energy depletion (loss) that occurs during exercise stimulates restorative processes during sleep. Since we had sleep failures before, regular exercises have improved our sleep quality. Regular physical activity has helped us sleep better and feel more energized during the day.
In as much as there are several drinks these days taken to boost “manpower” like Sting, Kalaso, Predator, Rock Boom, Kaziire etc, physical exercise is the best silver bullet. For those still active in relationships, engaging in regular exercises strengthens the heart, improve blood circulation, tones muscles, and enhances flexibility, all of which can improve our relationships. All in all, regular physical activity has increased the production of hormones that make us feel happier and help us sleep better. If we aim for 150 to 300 minutes of activity each week, our life and moods will be much better. Physical activity is anything that gets our heart beating faster, like brisk walking, cycling, or swimming.
The writer is the General Manager of Commercial Banking at Centenary Bank.