Exercise is any physical activity that works your muscles and burns calories. It can be low intensity, such as walking or doing common household chores; moderate intensity, such as cycling, ballroom dancing, and jogging; or high intensity, such as running, swimming, and playing sports like tennis and basketball.
How much exercise do you get each week? How often do you have to do it for optimal health?
Regular exercise is key to a healthy and long life. Many research studies have found that it can positively affect the different aspects of your health, whether physically, mentally, or sexually. The following are some great benefits that you can get if you exercise on a regular basis:
Physical activity makes your body release more serotonin and norepinephrine, which are two hormones that can boost your mood and reduce feelings of stress, anxiety, and depression. In addition, it supports the production of endorphins, which are chemicals that decrease negative feelings and pain perception.
Diet plays an integral role in weight loss, and it is possible to lose weight just by calorie counting and portion control. However, if you also exercise, you can get down to your ideal weight faster, as regular physical activity helps burn more calories.
Bone and muscle strength
To build and maintain strong and healthy bones and muscles, you have to eat a healthy and balanced diet and be physically active. Various exercise routines, such as weight lifting, can facilitate bone and muscle building, reducing the risk of breakdown and injuries.
There was a study that found that regular exercise promotes increased energy levels. Test subjects who exercised on a regular basis for six weeks showed decreased feelings of exhaustion and fatigue and increased energy levels.
Enhanced sexual performance
Testosterone is the most important sex hormone in men, and it is key to high libido or sex drive, firm and long-lasting erections, top quality sperm, and other sexual and reproductive functions. For your body to produce enough of it, one of the best and safest natural ways is regular exercise.
Decreased risk of various diseases
Every time you exercise, you work your different vital organs, including your heart and lungs, and improve your blood pressure, cholesterol, and sugar levels, lowering your risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, obesity, and other health complications.
However, if you exercise too much, you may experience some negative effects.
Below are symptoms of overexercising that you should be aware of:
Changes in your mood
If your body is overworked, being irritable, anxious, depressed, angry, or confused is very likely to happen. This is because a tired body will release more of the same stress hormones that are released when you are in a bad emotional state.
Increase in your resting heart rate
On average, the normal resting heart rate of an adult is around 60 beats per minute to 100 beats per minute. But, those who are a lot more physically active, such as athletes, have a resting heart rate of around 40 beats per minute to 60 beats per minute. Now, if you overexercise, your resting heart rate can go higher than the normal resting heart rate by as much as 50 beats per minute to 65 beats per minute. This is because exercising too much makes your heart work a lot harder.
Disrupted sleep pattern
Because your body is too tired, sleep may not come easy. For example, if you are used to going to bed at 10 p.m., you might not feel sleepy by the time that hour comes but rather feel restless. Even if you lay in bed and close your eyes, trying to fall asleep, your brain and body might not be able to make that possible because they are overloaded and overstressed due to your overexercising.
Working out much more than you should can impair your metabolism, slowing it down and causing a decrease in your appetite. So, if you continue over-exercising without sufficiently nourishing yourself, your body will experience more wear and tear, decreasing your physical performance and abilities and increasing your risk of injuries and other health problems.
Weakened immune system
An exhausted and fatigued body is not able to fight off viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens that bring diseases as effectively as a healthy body. This makes you very prone to common infections such as colds and cough and can lead to an increased risk of heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and other chronic diseases.
Persistent pains and aches
If you overtrain, you are subjecting your muscles, bones, and joints to excess stress and pressure that they might not be able to handle, causing pains and aches all over your body. If you do not pull back on your workout, you might feel the soreness and discomfort for several days, weeks, or even months. You have to realize that these persistent pains and aches are your body’s way of telling you that you need to take a break before more serious injuries and complications arise.
If you used to be able to run several miles a day, but are now barely able to cover a couple of miles without being out of breath and your legs feeling like deadweights, you might be doing a lot more exercising than your body can handle. Your muscles and the rest of your body are telling you that they need more time to repair and recharge, so you have to step back and reduce your workout time and intensity.
Loss of interest in exercise
Experiencing a major decline in your desire or motivation to exercise is a telltale sign that you are overworked and overstressed. Your body is fatigued, and your brain is telling you that you desperately need rest. Why not take a few days off to give your muscles time to recuperate? Forcing it will only make matters worse and endanger your health even more.