here are plenty of reasons why regular exercise and physical fitness are important to your overall health and wellbeing, in fact we know them by heart – weight loss, lean muscular physique and glowing skin among the usual driving forces.
In this article we would like to focus more on the mental side of keeping your fitness levels high and why it is the easiest thing you can do to increase your chance of success.
Regular exercise has been proven to increase metabolic rates, which link to your body’s ability to absorb nutrients from foods. What is more, metabolic rates remain high hours and days after you have been physically active.
Naturally, the more efficiently your body utilises its available resources, the more energy it releases on a constant basis and with exuberant amounts of energy, you will be eager to complete so many more tasks related to yourself and career development.
If you ever feel tired but have an enormous to-do list to complete, spending extra energy seems borderline counterintuitive. However, science shows that you have higher chances to fight fatigue by going for a brisk walk instead of just taking that half an hour “power” nap.
Ever experienced “brain fogs”, described as the continuous cognitive hindrance that prevents you from thinking clearly?
Recent studies on the links between cognitive performance and physical fitness unequivocally show evidence that medium-intensity exercise stimulates the brain into producing neurotrophic chemicals whose sole purpose is to repair the brain’s neural pathways.
Simply increasing our heart rate to 70% of its capacity for merely 30 minutes every morning we can rest assured that our brain will be sharp as a knife for the rest of the day.
Constant low quality of sleep or depriving your body of the hours of sleep it needs to function properly are surely leading causes of “burnout”, a term that has permanently entered our popular dictionary.
A differentiating factor for physically fit people is the quality of their sleep as a result of improved circadian rhythms, brain processes that dictate when we should fall asleep or when it’s time wake up.
In her recent book, “The Sleep Revolution” author and businesswoman Arianna Huffington stresses the importance of quality sleep for long-term success and denounces the absurd work culture that she claims to have initiated a worldwide sleep deprivation crisis in America.
Practical advice to fight stress related insomnia is going for a low-intensity evening run three to four hours before bedtime, guaranteed to make you sleep like a baby.
Physical fitness increases your body’s ability to produce endorphins also known as the “happiness” hormones. Endorphins stimulate the brain’s opiate receptors that are in charge of numbing physical pain as well as preventing depression triggers.
Since happy people are, generally speaking, more productive, this natural way of keeping happy will keep you in a positive state of mind, even when turbulent changes and events occur in your career thus contributing to long-term success.
Furthermore, your optimistic outlook increases the chances of attracting like minded, positive people around you and form meaningful relationships with them. Cultivating such a network of people who will support, challenge and motivate you is a key enabler for success.
Keeping at your peak physical shape is a long-term engagement that relies on goal setting and challenging yourself physically in each exercise session. Completing a ten mile run or lifting weights that previously seemed impossible, give us a sense of personal achievement we can feel proud of.
Meeting our physical goals every day puts us in this ever-present state of accomplishment which makes us feel even more confident. What is more important, conquering a physical challenge gives us the self-esteem to tackle any other challenge in any other area of life.
Next time you have an enormous work project that you worry about, why not invest just an hour of physical activity and see how you feel afterwards? Chances are, you won’t feel that intimidated by it and will be able to confidently carry it to completion.
Contrary to logic, investing time in maintaining your physical fitness helps you feel like you have more time during the rest of the day and in this sense is never time lost. For that one hour of exercise, you gain ten hours of energy, focus and peak performance.
Physically fit people all report that any work-related activity becomes easier to complete and they proactively seek to complete more tasks whilst others struggle with their daily grind, stressing out about not having time and worrying their nights away instead of getting quality sleep.
If you are feeling stuck in your career or reached a plateau state, working on your fitness levels will help you re-start and realign your body, mind and spirit. Before you know it, you will be rewarded with tons of energy and focus, your body’s way of saying thank you.