How much do you know about the human body? You've signed up for the gym, strapped on your trainers, drunk your sports drink - but do you really know what your body needs fitness wise to maintain your wellbeing?
Sometimes there seems to be such a plethora of contradictory information about what the human body needs, that it's hard to know who to believe. However, once you get past the sensational newspaper headlines, it's actually quite simple to upkeep your fitness do your exercise and think about overall wellbeing.
One area of confusion concerns how much exercise you require. As with anything, it depends on what your goals are, but as a rule of thumb, three to four workouts per week of at least thirty minutes should keep you healthy and happy.
When you are first starting to exercise, it is wise to take it easy. If you haven't exercised for a long time, or have any health concerns, check with your doctor before you start. Don't jump in at full intensity - give your system time to get used to a new regime, gradually building both the time and intensity of your workouts. If you can develop a regular, consistent programme, you will see the benefits much more quickly than if your workouts are erratic and sporadic.
As we said, exercise will help you sleep better, and you will want more sleep if you are exercising regularly. In addition, it is important to allow time for the workouts to benefit you - rest days are crucial, and indeed working out every day is unhealthy and ultimately unsustainable.If you are investing time in exercise, it makes sense to eat a healthy diet. Would you buy a new sports car then put used cooking oil in the engine? A healthy, balanced diet, allied to a regular exercise programme, will soon have you feeling ready for anything.
The bottom line is that exercise is good for you and helps with your entire wellbeing. It doesn't matter if you run, swim, play 5-a-side football or do 1-on-1 pilates - exercise is what your body needs. Exercise will improve your muscle tone, help you control your weight, reduce your blood pressure, help prevent heart disease - in fact, it will improve the functioning of almost every one of your essential systems, from digestion to sleep.