If I Can Do It Anybody Can

Written by Paul Davis on May 8, 2011, 10:26 p.m.

I have a confession.

I'm not crazy about exercise. Over the past 3-4 years I've had my usual list of excuses for not taking the time to get off my derriere and burn some "rubber" (blubber, that is). I'm sure my book of excuses is as big as yours, so trust me, I understand the challenge of regular exercise!

But this January I made a promise to myself (and my wife) that I would join the gym and get into a regular exercise routine. I'm happy to say that I've been about 90% faithful to that commitment. But it's still not easy. I have to make myself get over to the gym when I'd rather sit in front of my computer or watch the news.

I was particularly encouraged the other evening when I checked in to the big exercise room. Between my gasps for air, I began noticing men and women of all ages, sizes and states of fitness. One guy was probably over 400 lbs…but he was THERE! And he was trying hard to keep his commitment. Another fellow had obviously had a stroke…but he was THERE, pulling hard on the weights and doing his part to stay healthy.

Sure, there were all the other young bucks with their bulging muscles staring at themselves in the mirror as they flexed, hoping the young ladies would notice. But at least they were THERE…not sitting on a couch with a beer in one hand and a remote control in the other.

So why bother exercising? Let me give you a few reasons other than getting the admiring looks from the ladies!

1.  Improves your mood, calms you down, even helps fight depression.

2.  Combats chronic diseases: osteoporosis, heart disease, peripheral vascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and certain kinds of cancer, like breast cancer! New data suggests it even helps ward off Alzheimer's disease.

3.  Helps you manage your weight. The more your burn, the easier it is to keep your weight at a healthy level. Life insurance companies have studied the risk of excess weight for years…and they know it pays to stay lean. So look for ways to stay active at both home and work, join a gym, and keep your BMI (Body Mass Index) under 25.

4.  Boosts your energy level. Exercise puts more oxygen and nutrients in your tissues and beefs up your whole cardiovascular system. You'll get a lot more benefit from exercise than you will from simply chewing energy bars and guzzling energy drinks!

5.  Promotes better sleep. And good sleep helps with concentration, mood and productivity. But don't exercise too close to bedtime as it may energize you too much at a time when you need to wind down.

6.  May improve your sex life. Regular exercise promotes better blood flow to all the important areas that have to do with sexual function. Women who exercise regularly often notice enhanced arousal and men notice fewer problems with erectile dysfunction.

7.  It can improve the total quality and pleasure of life. Reduces pain, promotes a sense of well being, puts some good old fashioned fun back in your life!

But if you don't like a gym full of young bucks and old geezers, buy a bike, take a long walk, hike the trails, take the stairs, get a weight bench for the basement. And throw away your book of excuses! Boost your life with regular exercise and you may not have to visit me in office nearly as much! 

See you at the gym!