Exercise VS Lifestyle: Which Is More Important?

My efforts over this last year have been to encourage you to embrace a Lifestyle of Health, Fitness, and Wellness. Usually, if someone is an exercise nut like me, he or she has more than a mild interest in healthy lifestyle choices… usually.

Let’s give ourselves a great overview of the big picture by addressing the issue posed in this post’s title: “What if I exercise, but still have a few bad habits that I know I need to change?”

Let’s get started.

The Case For Exercise

Many years ago, I read the following statement, but I don’t remember where: “If the benefits of exercise were available in a pill, it would be the most prescribed medication in the world.”

It made such an impression on me that, although I forgot the source, I never forget the concept.

Some of the health benefits of exercise:

1. It increases heart efficiency http://abcnews.go.com/Health/seconds-exercise-worthwhile-90-minutes/story?id=24759309

2. It is effective in small but consistent doses. Read the article referenced in previous point.

3. Resistance exercise strengthens bones.

http://www.menshealth.com/fitness/don-t-follow-fitness-advice

http://google.com/newsstand/s/CBIwo8-y3xk

4. Physical activity is a key factor in avoiding Alzheimer’s.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-tiffany-chow/alzheimers-prevention_b_5569094.html

5. Exercise effectively lowers blood sugar.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/health/la-he-exercise-snack-20140614,0,7189358.story?track=rss

6. A program of regular walking significantly effects symptoms related to peripheral artery disease.

http://mobile.reuters.com/article/idUSKBN0E61IN20140526?feedType=RSS&irpc=932

7. Cardiovascular fitness is positively correlated to longevity.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/05/15/us-elderly-hypertension-fitness-idUSKBN0DV1H820140515?feedType=RSS&feedName=healthNews

8. Exercise is an effective treatment for anxiety and depression

http://www.scielo.br/scielo.php?pid=S1516-44462005000400003&script=sci_arttext&tlng=es

9. Exercise reduces the risk of heart disease.

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/the-single-best-thing-women-can-do-for-their-hearts/

10. Exercise reduces the risk of breast cancer.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2014/03/20/291894075/exercise-cuts-breast-cancer-risk-for-all-women-everywhere?ft=3&f=1001

11. Exercise has a profound effect on your brain, including aspects of creativity and reasoning.

http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/fastcompany/headlines/~3/lZ2S8gZJFNQ/the-creative-brain-on-exercise

The Case For Lifestyle

This is really a question of: “How much can I harm myself physically, mentally, and emotionally by making bad lifestyle choices?”

Let’s just use, for example, one behavioral choice and its consequences: smoking. There’s just too much damage being done to multiple organs and body systems to hope that exercise could be sufficient to counteract the effects. And that’s just one behavior. Add a few others like insufficient sleep, poor nutrition, and too much stress, and you begin to see that as important as exercise is, it’s really only one piece of your Wellness puzzle.

There’s no need to tell you what you already know, but I will, nonetheless. Mistreatment of your body does long-term catastrophic damage… much of it taking place that you can’t see or perceive until the damage is already done!

Conclusion:

As powerful and positive as exercise is, it cannot undue all of the major deleterious effects that can result from unhealthy lifestyle choices.

So, the best thing to do right now, is to stop doing the harmful things first.

Make The Decision And Do It Now,

Steven

The Senior Health and Fitness Blog by Steven Siemons is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Here’s a collection of over 500 health and fitness articles I’ve saved for you:
http://www.pinterest.com/stevensiemons/the-senior-health-news-board/



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