Falling in love with physical fitness

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Beginning the journey to becoming physically fit is one of the best things one can do for the human body — especially during the fall.

Fall typically provides cooler weather, changing of the leaves and an overall sense of positivity in the air. Whether one is exercising by running a 5K, hiking through the wilderness, going to the gym or simply just walking the local trails, falling in love with the idea of overall bodily movement benefits the body entirely when discussing both the human body and mind.

Exercise affects our mental state in various ways: increased endorphins such as serotonin and dopamine, decreased anxiety and stress, and a boosted sense of self-esteem.

Becoming physically fit helps decrease the chance of cardiovascular disease, blood pressure, risk of stroke, obesity, etc. If you are able to achieve at least 150 minutes per week of light-to-moderate activity, then all the above positive symptoms have a much greater chance of being achieved.

Loneliness, depression and a lacking sense of self-worth are all common mental concerns that can occur if one is isolated, going through challenges in their personal lives and simply just not being physically active enough. September is also known as Suicide Awareness month, so understanding that becoming physically active and being more mindful of what you do in terms of exercise is essential and extremely important to do in order to achieve a positive mindset about yourself and life in general.

The Sam B. Cook Healthplex offers a wide variety of medical professionals that can help individuals become more active if they are not already. This month, the Sam B. Cook Healthplex is offering current members and new members the opportunity to purchase two training packages at just $22 dollars in honor of the first day of fall being Sept. 22. This opportunity allows current and new members of the Sam B. Cook Healthplex to learn new exercises, meet new people and challenge their bodies in ways they have not been challenged before. Also, this opportunity allows members to ask any questions they might have in regards to fitness and personal health.

Besides this wonderful opportunity, the Sam B. Cook Healthplex provides a supportive community of people who all have one goal in common — to become better every day. Having close friends and family members to hold you accountable, exercise specialists ensuring you perform safe exercises, and a gym filled with love and compassion can all be found at the Sam B. Cook Healthplex.

According to the National Library of Medicine, exercise can also reduce tiredness, improve mental alertness and improve sleep patterns.

Putting forth effort in overall physical activity is essential, and if you are not the most motivated to begin or even to continue exercise, just recall the following: Exercise boosts self-esteem, serotonin and dopamine levels, and improves the overall feeling of self-worth and happiness.

Again, it’s Suicide Awareness Month, so if you or anyone you know is struggling with internal conflict, the suicide lifeline is 988.

Give exercise a try, recommend exercise to somebody else who is not already exercising and always strive to be a better version of yourself than yesterday. Be better every day and make a difference in your life and others. The best way to take care of both your mind and body is through exercise.

Brenden Brown is an exercise specialist at Capital Region Medical’s Sam B. Cook Healthplex. He has a Bachelor of Arts in Exercise Science, is a certified personal trainer through the National Strength and Conditioning Association and is a certified Rock Steady Boxing Coach. He loves to help people of all fitness levels improve their health through movement.