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The Importance of Exercise

Yes, it's that dreaded word! 'Exercise'! The majority of the population claim they don't have time for exercise or simply can't be bothered to do any. It's so easy just to hop in the car and drive to the local shop, or get a takeaway every night instead of cooking, but we've got to keep in mind our personal health. Take a look at some helpful ideas of how to make your life just that little but more healthy.

Why is Exercise so Important?

Being physically active offers many rewards. You can lose weight, become fitter, reduce stress levels , improve sleep patterns, increase your life quality and expectancy, and reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes and some forms of cancer. Overall, it makes you feel refreshed and happy! It's suggested that everyone should participate in some form of exercise for 30 minutes 5 days a week, whether it be walking to the shops, running up and down the stairs or going to a weekly aerobics class. Take the stairs rather than the lift, get off the bus one stop earlier and walk the rest of the way, park further away from the shops, run up the stairs when you get to work. It can be difficult to fit exercise into your busy lifestyle, but every little bit helps.

"But I don't have time for exercise"

Have you ever used that phrase? Do you feel like your life's too jam-packed with other duties to take some time out for yourself? Well, why not try these handy tips? You'll be pleased to know that shorter workouts throughout the day can usually be as effective as burning away those unwanted calories than longer workouts. Just make the workouts intense, get your heart rate up, and repeat them whenever you have a spare 15 minutes. Try adding a few more exercises such as jumping jacks or sit ups into your routine to work even more muscles. Even if you don't notice a physical difference, your mind and body will feel better for it!

Exercise Food

The key component to good health is a healthy balanced diet. Take everything in moderation, have a good helping of fruit and veg, and ensure you have the Recommended Daily Allowance of nutrients. Water is one of the most important nutrients needed in the body. We take in water when we drink and eat, and lose it when we sweat, respire and excrete. Therefore, a good balance is needed to make sure we don't get heat stroke or dehydrated, especially when exercising.

At most Health Farms and Health Spas, you'll find they run lectures on how to become more aware of calories and saturated fat levels, and give lessons on portion control.

What happens to your body during exercise?

It's important we know what's happening to our body's during exercise so we know which foods will be beneficial to us, especially if trying to lose weight. When the carbohydrates in our body break down, glucose is formed and stored as glycogen. Glycogen can only be stored in a limited supply, so therefore needs to be kept 'topped up'. This is done by consuming more carbohydrates, which results in less chance of fatigue and dizziness.

So, carbohydrates aren't all that bad for you. More are needed when you're exercising, due to the more glucose being used. Most of our carbohydrates should come from starchy foods, such as rice, pasta, potatoes and bread, and the rest should come from sugary sources like drinks and snacks. It's a good idea to have something high in carbohydrates, such as a cereal bar, banana, jam sandwich or a sports drink about 30 minutes before exercising becuase it'll improve you performance and help maintain sugar levels.

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