What is the difference between exercise and physical activity? Physical activity is any type of movement of the body that increases your metabolism and causes your muscles to contract. Examples of physical activity range from playing basketball to making beds. Exercise itself is actually a subcategory of physical activity. When you exercise, you are engaging in a structured program of physical activity intended to help you maintain or achieve maximum physical fitness, such as walking or rowing.
Choosing to exercise regularly at least three times per week results in numerous health benefits. The old adage “use it or lose it” definitely applies to exercising on a regular basis. When you neglect to engage in a scheduled exercise routine, your muscles become flabby and your heart and lungs struggle to perform. If you want to lose weight, cutting calories is only half the battle. Exercise firms your body and gives you the toned, fit appearance you want.
The benefit of regular exercise includes:
1. Lowered body fat, which helps you to avoid conditions such as diabetes, obesity and cancer.
2. Improved circulation, resulting in a healthier heart and blood vessels with a more efficient cardiovascular system overall.
3. More stamina, building your body up over time so that it uses less energy to perform the same tasks.
4. Enhanced flexibility, giving you a better ability to bend, twist and reach without injury, as well as improving your overall balance and coordination.
5. Strengthening and toning your entire body for greater strength and endurance and better posture.
6. Elevated endorphins to give you a better quality of life by reducing stress so that you sleep better and feel better.
An effective, regular exercise routine includes several stretching exercises to start so that your muscles are warmed up for activity. After stretching, twenty minutes of aerobic activity such as running or walking will burn calories and improve your cardiovascular health. Finally, cool down by performing a few more stretches. Add a few minutes of weight lifting or resistance training to your routine for improved strength and endurance.
Spending a half hour three times a week on exercise is a sure way to improve your health, fitness and well-being.