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Why You Should Be Exercising, the Top 5 Exercise Myths Dispelled

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Why You Should Be Exercising, the Top 5 Exercise Myths Dispelled

Fact: Often business owners believe they’re too busy to exercise.

So busy, they neglect to look after themselves with good nutrition and/or exercise. I know it well because I too have been in and out of that trap of being time poor, with exercise being the first to go. Then as our energy wanes we start making some not so healthy food choices, then before we know it we’re on that merry-go-round. Too tired to exercise, too tired to worry about what we are putting into our mouths, and often at this point we start to question why we do what we do. Business and life can become overwhelming.

If it’s any consolation, this is not uncommon at all.  What’s important is to not beat yourself up; acknowledge when it happens and take a break. You’ve had a ‘meltdown’ of sorts, and then you get back to being the entrepreneurial person you are. However, if this becomes overwhelming and tiredness is presenting for longer, then it’s time to reach out. Catch up with someone that ‘gets it’, which is usually a fellow business owner.

If you google exercise or healthy lifestyle, you’ll find a myriad of information. Some helpful, some over the top and a few myths to go with it.

Let’s explore and dispel my top 5 myths for (non-competitive athletes) busy, business owners:

Myth 1 – You must exercise every day to be fit.

With many of us juggling business, family and social commitments we barely have time to sit and relax let alone squeeze in a daily fitness regime. When you tell yourself you need to dedicate a fair chunk of time to exercise every day to gain any benefits; it’s no wonder so many don’t include exercise at all.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends adults only need to complete 150 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity a week. This equates to 30 minutes of exercise (i.e. walking the dog briskly), five times per week. On the days when 30 minutes is a push, then break the time down even further; do three lots of 10 minutes of exercise during the day.

Leave your desk mid-morning and walk the stairs for 10 minutes. Take a lunch break; did I say “Take a lunch break?” Yes, take your lunch and do a brisk 10-minute walk, eat and breathe in some fresh air. Then later take time out for another 10-minute exercise break.

Myth 2 – The best way to lose weight is to exercise.

I wish this were true, but it’s not, “You cannot outrun a bad diet”. Obviously, exercise does contribute, if food habits are poor. Studies have shown that an intelligent eating plan alone will induce weight loss. Why? Because to lose weight, we need to have a calorie deficit so that calories burned are less than what is consumed. It is much more difficult to burn calories through exercise than it is to eat a healthy balance of foods for weight loss.

If you consume half a block of dark chocolate (six lines) that equals 30 minutes of vigorous exercise, but, you would need to double the time for less vigorous exercise such as fast walking or pilates.

Myth 3 – The best time to exercise is first thing in the morning.

The important fact is to exercise consistently; therefore, you need to do what works with your schedule. The benefits are the same as long as you do it. My personal preference is first thing in the morning. It clears my head and helps gets my brain active and more productive. You need to commit to a time that works best for you and your business.

Myth 4 – Weight training is only for men. Women don’t want big muscles.

One of the most important facts about weight training is it is to gain strength, regardless of gender. When women weight train they improve their relative strength by just as much as men do. Women will not bulk up as men do because on average men produce more testosterone than women. It’s this hormone that plays the major role in building muscle.

Myth 5 – The longer you work out, the better.

The WHO states additional benefits are gained when increasing moderate intensity exercise if you double the recommended 150 minutes to 300 minutes per day. From my experience, it is not uncommon to see people going to the gym and working out morning and night up to six times per week. That’s 12 hours! There is a point though where excessive exercise becomes counter-productive as it increases the chance of injury due to the additional stress on your body plus you will simply burn out which is often the case.

We all know the importance of having some form of exercise in our life, and this is so true for business owners. Incorporating appropriate exercise into your day will result in you having more energy. While this may sound counterproductive, it’s not, as exercise also has great benefits for your mental health as it releases endorphins that will make you feel happy.

Take the time and strive to create and maintain a balanced, healthy lifestyle and it will provide you with a state of wellbeing, bringing you joy and happiness in various ways. Get off the unhealthy merry-go-round and feel the difference for yours and your business’s health.

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