obviously we all understand the importance of exercise and a healthful diet as it pertains to weight loss, but did you know that regular cardio can help you avoid vision deterioration as you age? or that you can sidestep PMS symptoms and cramping just by eating right? there are soooo many other (dare we say, better) reasons to fit in that sweat sesh + eat those veggies that have absolutely nothing (zilch, zero, nada!) to do with the # on the scale. here are our 10 fave reasons to toss it out the window:
1 [reduce stress + anxiety] studies show that breaking a sweat is one of the quickest, most effective ways to boot stress-producing cortisol from your bod + thus calm your mind.
2 [kick seasonal allergies to the curb] according to researchers, a quick 30-minute jog can reduce all those annoying allergy symptoms like sneezing + congestion by up to 90%. we’ll take it!
3 [get those creative juices flowing] when we get stuck on a project, we instinctively get up + walk around. and it works every. single. time. now we know why: a recent study found that walking improves the two types of thinking associated with upping your creativity. go figure!
4 [protect your eyes] we’ve all seen our parents or grandparents pull out those reading glasses + squint their way through the dinner menu. let’s face it, as we age, so do our eyes, which often leads to vision loss or impairment. but with cardio comes hope! studies show that those who stay consistently active retain 2x more vision-aiding retinal neurons than couch potatoes.
5 [help you snooze] battling insomnia? hop on the treadmill! numerous sleep studies have shown that people who fit in regular exercise have far fewer episodes of insomnia + a higher quality of sleep overall. wanna ensure you get those zzz's even further? word on the street is, people who practice gratitude enjoy better sleep overall, so grab a gratitude journal you love + make it a daily habit to record all those things you're grateful for.
maintaining a healthy diet...
6 [saves you moolah] the next time you’re tempted to gripe about the cost of whole foods and organics as compared to processed fare, keep in mind that an ounce of prevention now is worth a pound of cure later. when you factor in the resulting long-term healthcare savings as a result of your preventative self-care, you actually end up saving $2.71 for every dollar spent! wanna save even more?? put all those whole foods to good use by packing a healthy lunch at home, fitportions-style!
7 [prevents PMS] fiber-filled fruits + veggies battle the bloat, foods packed with magnesium curb those cramps, iron-rich red meat fights fatigue, dairy-darling calcium calms + zinc-loaded greens even out that notorious PMS temper.
8 [boosts your immunity] there’s a reason we tell you to #eat5 (ok, well there are many reasons). one recent study found that people who eat more fruits + veggies get sick less often.
9 [makes you smarter] the most innovative civilizations have all lived on or in close proximity to bodies of water - many experts attribute this to fish consumption. now, a recent study has shown that consuming plenty of healthy fats, protein + antioxidant-rich produce increases cognitive function + prevents memory loss later.
10 [provides sweet relief for sore muscles] protein after a workout not only helps build up those muscles, it also repairs + soothes them. p.s. we've got just the mixer for you to shake up + fuel up post sweat-sesh!
so go ahead + lose that scale, FREE YOURSELF from scale-obsession oppression (or at least stop sweating those weekly weigh-ins)! think of exercise + healthful eating as a lifestyle choice with long-term residual benefits, not a temporary obligation with nothing more than weight-loss as your endgame. practice gratitude for all the amazing things your body can do when you give it the things it really needs to thrive, not attitude because of one silly number. don't let a scale be what makes or breaks your day - you are worth SO much more!
what perks have you experienced as part of your healthy + active lifestyle (besides a perkier behind)? let us know in the comments below!
p.s. all research cited here.