If you want to feel better, have more energy and even add years to your life, check out these seven ways exercise can lead to a happier, healthier you:
Exercise controls weight. Exercise can help control your weight, prevent excess weight gain or maintain weight loss. When you take part in physical activity, you burn calories. The more intense the activity, the more calories you burn.
Exercise improves mood. Physical activity stimulates various brain chemicals that may leave you feeling happier, more relaxed and less anxious. You also may feel better about your appearance when you exercise regularly, which can boost your confidence and improve your self-esteem.
Exercise boosts energy. Regular physical activity can improve your muscle strength and boost your endurance. Exercise delivers oxygen and nutrients to your tissues and helps your cardiovascular system work more efficiently. And when your heart and lung health improve, you have more energy to tackle daily chores.
Exercise promotes better sleep. Regular physical activity can help you fall asleep faster, get better sleep and deepen your sleep.
Exercise puts the spark back into your sex life. Regular physical activity can improve energy levels and increase your confidence about your physical appearance, which may boost your sex life. Regular physical activity may enhance arousal for women, and men who exercise regularly are less likely to have problems with erectile dysfunction than men who don't exercise.
Exercise can be fun and social. Exercise and physical activity can be enjoyable. Exercise gives you a chance to unwind, enjoy the outdoors or simply take part in activities that make you happy. Physical activity also can help you connect with family or friends in a fun social setting.
Connect with others talking about exercise and living well in the Aging Well support group on Mayo Clinic Connect, an online patient community moderated by Mayo Clinic.