Why You Need to Exercise Everyday for the Rest of Your Life
“Every action you take is a vote for the type of person you wish to become.” James Clear
Our biology and culture are mismatched. We are stripping movement out of our daily lives for the sake of convenience, jobs, and because it’s engineered into our society.
Movement is what our bodies have known for thousands of years. Yet it has been exponentially removed from our culture over the last 150 years.
What we put around us does not align with what our bodies require.
McDonalds, cars, desk jobs, cellphones, and every product and service we buy is trying to eliminate an inconvenience, and take us down the path of least resistance.
Now we have to try and get to the gym, to offset the 10-12 hours of immobility built into our lives. It’s a start, and that's amazing. But it isn't enough.
Now we have to try to choose healthier options although we are surrounded by cheaper, hyper-palatable, ultra-processed foods we are biologically wired to seek out.
Now we have to try to remain calm and present in a time where everything is fighting for our attention, and literally rewiring our brains to crave instant gratification at an exponential rate. Social media, push notifications, streaming services, double tap likes, ads, fear-driven media, and more.
You don’t have a lack of willpower. Instead, it’s the societal and cultural forces around you that weigh far more than humans have ever experienced before
We are being forced into disease care.
Society moves forward with whatever is on demand. We just have to work harder than ever to create the environment we need.
A healthier culture starts with a choice.
When we move, we are giving our bodies a stimulus to continue on. Just as you need to purpose in your work, your body gets it through movement. Thus, exercise must also be a part of your life’s work.
Living longer, and living well requires us to put daily exercise back into our routines. Exercise is about purpose, and empowerment.
In Dare to Lead, Brené Brown talks about “painting done.”
What does your end goal look like?
Why is your goal, and the reasons to support it so important to you?
What’s the entire picture?
How will you feel?
What will you have?
Create deeper meaning and context around exercise to help hold yourself accountable to your habits.
“The answer is always in the entire story, not a piece of it.” - Jim Harrison
Movement is a powerful language for every cell in your body. You are designed to move. It is a large piece of what it means to be human.
By doing so, you give your body a stimulus for positive growth, and rejuvenation. Otherwise you decay, mentally and physically.
Schedule in exercise time every single day. Make it non-negotiable. Defend this time wholeheartedly. Find activities that you inherently love.
If you are older, and/or getting closer to retirement, you need to move more if you want to increase your health expectancy (years absent of disease, injury, and sickness), and your life expectancy.
Moving is a part of your life’s work. It gives you a purpose to continue living. And to do so with vibrant energy and vigour for years to come.
What to Do Next
1. Start Small, Get Consistent
Think about how you can turn the exercise dial just a little bit more today. Don’t lock yourself into all-or-nothing thinking. You can move a little bit more today. You don’t have to be on the “perfect” program.
”What can I do today, with little to no mental/physical resistance to overcome?”
”How can I make this activity just one percent better today?”
Consistency beats intensity. You are in this for the long haul, so don’t go all out in the beginning. Turn the dial just a bit, but never go back to zero. You want to do your exercise today knowing full well that you have to show up again tomorrow.
2. Incorporate Rejuvenating Aerobic Activities
Something that often gets overlooked when it comes to exercise, is selecting the right types of exercise. Ones which promote health longevity should spare our spines, joints, and nervous system.
When we talk about exercising everyday, we don’t mean pushing your body to the limits with high impact, high stress types of activity. We want you to feel amazing after. Finding that addictive state of flow and presence requires us to raise our heart rate just a little bit more.
Great types of aerobic activity you can include into your routine are:
Walking, hiking, gardening, cross country skiing, biking, rowing, and swimming.
3. Consider Destination Exercise Vacations
As we get older, it can feel as if time is speeding up. A large part of this is because we tend to get stuck into our same old routines, and our brains become accustomed to the daily monotony of our actions. Breaking out of these routines, and creating special experiences, places mental pin-points which help to solidify our presence in time.
Want to create exciting memories?
Want to do so while doing something good for your body?
How about also giving yourself something to train for to help with your sense of purpose?
Give active destination vacations a try.
These not only check all of the boxes above, but it also helps you increase your over all well being leading up to the even itself? How so?
This neurotransmitter was once thought to only elevate in response to pleasing stimuli. It has later been found to increase during other times as well: In anticipation for the event itself.
Training for something special such as an exercise vacation helps to create a lot of excitement and meaning behind your daily exercise habits. Otherwise, it can feel boring to exercise because you feel like you have to for health reasons. Yes, that is incredibly important. But when you are training for something, and not just working out, you are much more likely to stick to your exercise habits.
Thank you for reading my article. I hope you found it helpful or at least thought-provoking. If this post did help you, consider sharing it with someone you think it would help too.