Exercise came into my life just as I was looking for change. I asked her out, she said yes, we ran with it…our first few hook-ups were great.
She’d compliment my legs, promise great things for my body and get my heart pumping until I felt refreshed, euphoric and confident. I really liked her.
And soon we were taking things further. The sore limbs began shadowing the positive thoughts she gave me, the effort of rising from bed to sweat it out with her in the mornings began paling the refreshing aftermath into insignificance. I broke it off with her, and the deceptive joy of sugary foods made her an easy partner to get over at first….
Yet, after one particular fling with Mars Bar, Exercise began to conquer my thoughts once more. I’d often remember that euphoric grin she used to put on my face. All strains aside, I decided to take her back, get to know her better this time…I discovered a few things!
She can give me what they can’t
Ice-cream and Mars Bar may give buckets of pleasure when I’m in need of a quick pick-me-up…but they’re ultimately just a pair of guilty flings.
They can cause brain fry, sugar crash1 and even the development of addiction and compulsive eating. So even though I’m aware of their risks, I often give in to their temptation and the sugar-spike-sugar-crash cycle ensues…give me a couple hours and I’m snowed under by tiredness, negativity and regret.
Exercise, however, shows consistency in her effects. When I’m with her, my physical and emotional wellbeing only improves…that’s not mentioning the endorphins she releases and the runner’s high I’m left with when we say goodbye.
Instead of a sugar crash, she leaves me with an energizing outlook on life. She helps reduce my anxiety and depression, not fuel it. She offers reflective thought…not regretful thought. She is eternal happiness.
Looking back, the relationship began to get shaky as I got cockier; as I took pigeon steps between workouts. The ending was rocky only because I was taking on more than I could handle with her…we didn’t have to take things further at all.
Again, she is consistent. Upping my game was a priority stuck in my own head at the time, never in hers. I now realise I can enjoy her great benefits (Improved fitness, energy levels, reduced depression and anxiety) by being in her company as little as a couple hours a week, without expansion.
As long as I don’t expect too much from myself, she won’t either. Right now we’re moving at a steady pace and my times with her are uplifting.
She likes to reward me
It took some time, but eventually I began seeing the mustering of every morsel of courage to get out to her in the mornings as her want to reward me- instead of her want to drain me.
Being realistic, what sense of achievement ever comes easily? Although overdoing it with Exercise was one of my problems here, the thought of simply getting out for a ten minute walk regularly can be tough sometimes. But all I ought to do is to think about her rewards and I’m straight out the door now….
- Aerobic (commonly outdoor) exercise – which absorbs and transports oxygen throughout our bodies – is fantastic for our brains, keeping us alert, concentrated and supporting our learning and memories3. It can even support and prevent degeneration of the hippocampus, a part of the brain responsible for our learning.
- Sweating it out releases the peptide beta-endorphin4, a form of opioid. These are chemicals – including morphine – that resemble opiates in their pharmacological effects. They decrease our perception of pain and encourage positivity.
- We’re rewarded with relief from stress and anxiety, that’s because working out reduces the build up of hormones and chemicals that gather throughout our bodies during times of stress. Getting out there helps us to relax, it maintains our equilibrium.
She’s always there for me
Through rain, hail, sleet or snow, she’s always going to be waiting on me. Sometimes it’ll be easy to see, sometimes it won’t; that all depends on my mood at the time. All she can do is let me know what she can bring into my life, and then the rest is up to me.
Mars Bar or Exercise? Now you make the call!
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- (http://www.livestrong.com/article/528777-i-feel-bad-after-eating-sugar/) via livestrong.com
- Content thanks to YouthHealthNE authors, SpunOut.ie