Fitness Post – The Postives and Negatives of Exercise

This post is a bit ‘left field’ coming from me…particularly being in the Health and Fitness industry for over 40 years! So this is a short post, but not ‘tongue in cheek’ as there are pros and cons for doing exercise.

So, the negatives  or ‘cons’ first – 

  • Some physiologists say that we should not exercise because it lowers our immune system for a period of time directly afterwards, therefore we are susceptible to illness? 
  • Another negative is that exercise is not natural in that, although we are built for manual labor over the period of waking hours during the day. A short higher intensity of activity is not what we are designed for?
  • Therefore we should do lower intensity activity over our day (if that were possible) and this can be anything from housework to gardening to walking or any other physical activity throughout the day. This would be easy for anyone with a manually active job such as in building and construction work or for those who work in the service industry  – but a lot harder for someone who has a desk job? Maybe for those who have a less active job they could use their breaks to go for a walk or use the stairs instead of the elevator and find other opportunities to keep active after work? They could also walk at least part of the way to and from work?
  • So intense activity can put our health at risk and for those recovering from any illness, this would be something to consider. By finding times throughout the day to be active, but refrain from any intense activity would be a healthier option?

Now the ‘pros’ –

  • People of my ilk would say that the psychological benefits from exercising outweigh the physiological negatives. That the reality of living in a modern lifestyle mean that most people are ‘time poor’ and therefore doing some sort of exercise is better than using the excuse that it is not healthy and doing nothing?
  • The ‘feel good’ effect from exercising is an important plus for it, and the fact that the mind controls the body a positive attitude goes a long way in keeping healthy? 
  • As the photo above depicts, there are social benefits to exercising and this in addition to the point above. (Everyone has a smile on their face for a start!)  This is even more true to those involved with team sports who should condition themselves to be able to cope physically with their chosen sport?
  • To balance the argument, I should have four reasons to exercise so even though the ‘time poor’ concept above is not a strong case for exercising – because it is an arguable one – the hardest thing to change is anyone’s way of thinking? So the reality is in time constraints (which is the excuse people use to not exercise) in our modern way of living are a very strong case to at least put aside some time during the day to exercise? 

I have purposely ended each of these pros and cons to exercise above with a question mark. Each of us has our own reality and therefore you should question the reasons for and against any discussion point. One thing I must make clear and from my point of view of course…is that our bodies were built to move and if we wish to maintain our health, we should exercise. As to the mode of activity we do, it is up to the individual to decide. What we decide is dependent on various factors but I stand by the point is that the body is designed to move!

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