therapeutic massage

For various reasons, the majority of Americans live sedentary lifestyles and suffer the consequences of inactivity in the form of obesity, diabetes, and heart problems to name a few. Exercise is your free, natural, and effective way of reducing your risk of disease and living a long healthy life. I’ve compiled a list from various sources on many of the health benefits of exercise:

  • Controls weight
  • Combats health conditions and disease
  • Improves mood
  • Improves sex life
  • Boosts energy
  • Helps you sleep better at night
  • Increases your life expectancy
  • Decreases the chance of getting Type 2 Diabetes
  • Improved cognitive function and learning
  • Improves heart function
  • Improves lung function
  • Decreased incidence of osteoporosis
  • Decreases depression
  • Decreases anxiety
  • Reduces risk of certain types of cancer
  • Improved self-image
  • Improved self-esteem
  • Increased confidence levels
  • Decreased stress and effects of aging (notably less wrinkles)
  • Improved balance (resulting in less risk for falls)
  • Allows you to get outside and appreciate the outdoors
  • Improved memory
  • Boosts creativity
  • Increased muscular endurance
  • Helps manage blood pressure
  • Decreases low back pain (only when working with proper form!)
  • Increased immune system function! (Seriously though, last time I was deathly ill was after last Thanksgiving when I ate bad leftovers, other than that I’ve maybe caught a minor cough or sore throat)
  • Decreased guilt about eating! (Make sure to eat healthy though!)
  • Increased metabolism (even at rest)
  • You become an inspiration to others (ever wowed someone with your weight loss pictures? It’s a great feeling!)
  • Increased productivity at work (use that exercise equipment in the office!)
  • Decreased risk of mortality of all causes
  • Decreased risk of hypertension
  • Decreases triglycerides in the blood profile (bad fats)
  • Decreased risk of stroke
  • Increased HDLs (good cholesterol)
  • Decreased risk of hip fracture
  • Improved physical injury rehabilitation
  • Is a great way to meet new people in social activities
  • Reduces the severity of asthma (check with your doctor before beginning a strenuous exercise program)
  • Promotes healthy pregnancy
  • Improved oxygen and nutrient supply to all organs and cells in the body
  • Improved muscle strength
  • Improved joint function
  • Improved flexibility
  • Helps to manage arthritis
  • Decreases risk of heart attack
  • Promoting exercise to kids helps them become healthy adults
  • Helps kids and teenagers develop interpersonal skills (especially in team sports)
  • Improved coordination

I’ve got a quick drill for you to boost your happiness. It’s helped me plenty of times when I’ve woken up on the wrong side of the bed or had a bad day. It’s a real quick and easy way to help turn your day around. Sound too good to be true? Check it out:Step One: Smile into a mirror

That’s right. Look yourself in the mirror and give yourself the cheesiest grin you can put on. You’re going to feel awkward, ridiculous, and you’ll want to look away. Don’t do it. Look yourself in the eyes and continue smiling for a total of two minutes. Fake it until you make it if you need to, but hold it for a prolonged time! (More detailed info here!)

CheeeeeeeeseStep Two: Power pose into the mirror

Find your favorite power pose and pose in the mirror for five minutes.  Stand up tall. Puff your chest out. Flex your muscles. Check out your butt. Do whatever it is you do, but make sure it’s a pose that exudes confidence and power. Be as vain as you want. Basically, your body language affects your confidence levels, and holding a pose like this helps increase them. I gotta give social psychologist Amy Cuddy credit for this one, check out her TED talk for a thorough explanation!

Boss.Why am I doing this?

Both of these exercises help increase the release of chemicals in your brain that affect happiness. I know they’re cheesy as hell but they work. It’s gonna be weird the first few times you do it, but hey, they’re quick, free, effective, and only require a small chunk out of your day!