Monday, 2 November 2015

10 less obvious benefits of getting fitter

Everyone knows the big benefits of getting fitter, like losing weight, living longer and reducing your risk of certain health problems. There are however smaller, more personal or less talked about benefits that are also amazing, these are the ones I've experienced:
  1. Life is just easier, I can take the stairs, I can run around at work all day and still have the energy to go to the gym, I don't have to ask Tom to open jars for me any more, I can carry things that are heavy for longer, I can reach the top shelves without asking for help, I can sprint for the bus, I don't get tired standing at gigs and I don't overheat so quickly...
  2. You will eventually love feeling exhausted and sore, and the hour killing yourself at the gym or track will be the best part of your day. I relish getting covered in sweat, and feeling out of breath and tired. That's how you know it's working! I absolutely must come home at least one day a week and flop into the sofa proclaiming that I might die, I love feeling that I've pushed myself and made progress.
  3. You will see changes in random places and learn to love new parts of your body that you never noticed before. When you lose weight and gain muscle it happens everywhere, including your neck, face, feet, hands, ankles, knees...
  4. You will have SO much more energy. I used to lie in both days of the weekend for hours, now I get up at least one day of the weekend early ish to go to the gym. I also go 3 times a week straight from work for up to 2 hours. This would be ridiculous to me 3 years ago, but the more you do the more you can and want to do. This transfers to energy and motivation at work, at home and in life.
  5. You will feel proud of the small achievements and the big ones, yeah you want to run that race and will feel like a badass afterwards but you will also be grinning like an idiot after adding just 1 more minute to your max time on the treadmill.
  6. After you've been getting fit for a while, parts of the rest of your life will naturally change too. I drink less alcohol, eat better, and sleep more without ever having really made a conscious effort to do so. It has been a gradual slow change to certain ways of eating to fuel my body better, and if I drink the night before I'm going to the gym I don't perform as well. Also if you have been to work then to the gym for 2 hours getting home late and tired, then an early night is often inevitable!
  7. Strength is amazing to have in day to day life as a girl. I can lift my nieces and carry them around and put them on my shoulders, that isn't reserved just for their dads and uncles any more. I can move furniture around whenever I like, I can carry my own suitcase thank you very much, I can lift deliveries at work and of course I can carry far more shopping bags home from town :)
  8. You will just feel better about life. I can't explain it but I feel more awake than when I was a smoker living a sedentary lifestyle. I'm more motivated, more energetic, more open to new things, I get ill less, I get less aches and pains, I get less headaches and days where I feel tired. I have met new people, made a new lifestyle, made positive changes in my body, mind and life. 
  9. On that note you will also look better generally if you are living a healthy lifestyle, my skin is clearer, my hair is in good condition, I lost weight/puffiness around my face and neck at the start and I get less breakouts and greasy hair now I am eating better. 
  10. Taking care of yourself physically makes you really value your body. I am amazed at what I have put myself through over the last 2 years and that it has made my body what it is today, and me who I am today. I take care of myself so much better in other ways now, I get regular hair cuts, use better skin products and take daily multivitamins and vegetarian omega 3 capsules. I take time for myself every so often to recharge, I reward myself regularly - NOT always with food - I treat myself to a relaxing bath, a new book or new clothes. Little things that keep you loving life. I invest in my health and myself more, because you only get one body and self, and this is it.
There are so many more benefits to list! Leave me any of your weird or personal fitness perks in the comments :)


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