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Why Exercise?

It can reduce your risk of major illnesses, such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes and cancer by up to 50% and lower your risk of early death by up to 30%.

People who do regular activity have a lower risk of many chronic diseases, such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke and some cancers.
Research shows that physical activity can also boost self-esteem, mood, sleep quality and energy, as well as reducing your risk of stress, depression, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
“If exercise were a pill, it would be one of the most cost-effective drugs ever invented,” says Dr Nick Cavill, a health promotion consultant.

1. It’s good for your heart

“Even a moderate amount of exercise helps your heart,” says Dr William Kraus, associate professor of medicine at Duke University Medical Centre, in an article published in The New England Journal of Medicine. “Some exercise is better than none and more is better than less.”

Exercise reduces LDL cholesterol, the kind that clogs arteries. It also reduces your blood pressure, relieving stress on your heart; improves your insulin sensitivity; improves heart muscle function; and blood flow and diminishes the chances of developing blood clots. These findings have been corroborated by a host of studies over the years.

2. Exercise promotes weight loss

Research has shown that to manage weight, you should exercise energetically for at least 30 minutes a day. You can also do an hour of intensive exercise every second day if this fits into your schedule more easily. Be consistent and be regular. Do those one-hour exercise sessions three to four times every week, not just one week a month, and you will achieve the result you desire – to lose weight and keep it off, says Dr Ingrid van Heerden, registered dietician.

3. Exercise prevents osteoporosis

Exercise, together with a healthy calcium intake, builds strong bones. Weight-bearing exercises, like running, walking and weight-lifting, help lower your odds of getting osteoporosis as you grow older, according to experts.
Ideally, you should start when you’re young, but it’s never too late to pick up the habit. Even a brisk walk can help, say metabolic disease specialists.

4. Exercise lowers high blood pressure

Exercise is good for your blood pressure – no matter your age, weight, race or gender. And it really doesn’t matter whether you get exercise from a brisk walk, a fast run or a few laps in the pool; the results are equally good.

The studies on which these findings were based used “aerobic” exercise – activities that increase heart rate and improve the body’s ability to use oxygen. Most of the studies involved participating in one or more aerobic activity for 20 – 30 minutes per session, several times a week.

On average, exercise helped study participants reduce systolic (top number) pressure by nearly 4 mm Hg, and diastolic (bottom number) pressure by slightly more than 2.5 mm Hg. But experts caution that those with extremely high blood pressure should not rely on exercise alone to control hypertension.

5. Exercise is an excellent de-stressor

It’s general knowledge: exercise counters stress and depression. But exactly how and why does this work?

Exercise acts as a temporary diversion to daily stresses and it improves self-esteem. Increased core temperature during exercise may lead to reduced muscle tension and favourable alterations in brain neurotransmitters. Mood improvements may also occur due to the increased secretion of endogenous (internal) opiates, e.g. endorphins. Psychological changes may occur because of changes in norepinephrine, dopamine and serotonin, all hormones which can affect mood and anxiety levels.

Carly Cox - fitter Within two months of joining with the intention to lose weight I achieved a weight loss of 11lbs and am down to the size I was before pregnancy and feel a lot fitter. this wouldn’t have happened without the great One2Ones and team work of the Club.
Carly Cox