16th December: Exercise
16 DECEMBER 2015
Today, I am exceedingly grateful for the ability to move. I am thankful that I can move my body in all sorts of ways and for the satisfaction and accomplishment that exercise gives me. Plus, I rather like the effect that it has on the male form too…
Exercise is not something that only the health and fitness or beauty conscious need to do to achieve specific goals. Exercise is essential for our brain. The motor cortex which controls body movement and is involved in numerous functions across the brain has recently been correlated to promoting optimum brain health and therefore lowering the risk of numerous age-related and other diseases. It really is use it or lose it…
In addition, exercise assists in other processes such as learning. One of the most revelatory things that I’ve learnt during my neuroscience and leadership studies is about a protein called Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor. Dubbed Miracle-Grow for the brain, BDNF is boosted through regular intense exercise. Its impact on neurons is positively linked to enabling learning, memory, mood, weight management and aging at a normal rate.
For example, walk to school and higher grades could be more likely. Some schools are now running a morning structured exercise programme and importantly for the brain, children choose which physical activities they participate in. As a result, these forward-thinking educational establishments in different countries have seen massive grade increases in even the most disadvantaged pupils and those classified with ADHD. For adults wanting to maximise their cognitive capacities, whatever time you work out is the best time!
Over two years ago, thankfully I discovered BARREtoned which is a brilliant physically and mentally challenging exercise class. It is swiftly effective at working the whole body to achieve muscle strength, tone, inch loss and flexibility. Not to mention increasing height (!) and eliciting a mindful discipline. I know, as I could not do most of the moves when I started! The transformation and new achievements continue. Thank you, exercise.