The importance of exercise for health and wellbeing is widely understood. However, exercise can also play a critical role in the health of our relationships. Exercise & Sport Science Australia (ESSA), highlight how keeping fit and active can help to build better relationships with our partners, children and friends.
Physical activity increases the production of the brain’s feel-good neurotransmitters called endorphins. Endorphins act as natural painkillers, improving our ability to sleep and in turn reducing stress and anxiety levels. Exercise promotes a good level of mental health, thus helping to maintain happier relationships.
While exercise boosts your energy levels, oxygen capacity, muscle tone and general fitness, it also contributes to an increase in self-esteem. By implementing regular exercise into your daily routine, you’ll enjoy a sense of achievement from creating a leaner and stronger body.
Being fit and healthy and feeling happy about your body will automatically increase confidence levels, helping to strengthen current relationships and even give you the courage to reach out to new people.
A recent study conducted by Harvard psychology professor Emily Bernstein has revealed that the simple act of going for a jog can result in major improvements in how we think.
Spending 30-40 minutes doing vigorous aerobic activity (enough to make you really sweat) increases blood flow to the brain, thus improving focus and concentration, goal setting, time management and forward planning.
Vigorous exercise helps to clear your mind of daily worries and stresses, allowing you to spend more useful energy on important personal relationships.
Share with a partner or friend
Exercising with a partner or buddy has been well studied; with results all supporting the finding that working out as a duo has significant benefits, including improved performance and motivation.
The slogan ‘people who train together, stay together’ is highly fitting, with numerous studies revealing that exercising with your partner improves satisfaction within the relationship and increased feelings of love and attraction.
With exercise a known promoter of teamwork and connection, grabbing a friend or loved one to train with will be sure to improve your relationship.
Be a role model to your children
Your exercise behaviour and attitude towards health and fitness have a direct influence on your kids.
Studies reveal that the activity levels of parents have a significant influence on how children view exercise and it is crucial for their long-term health that you help create a positive connection with physical activity.
Simple activities like taking the dog for a walk together, going for weekend bike rides and shooting hoops in the backyard are highly valuable to the development of childrens’ attitudes towards exercise.
Incorporating active living into your daily family life will improve connectedness between you as well as set your children up for an active and healthy future.
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