When done properly, exercise can help you go a long way, provided you’ll perform your routine correctly. Aside from giving you numerous physical benefits, did you know that it can also provide you with adequate emotional and psychological benefits that can help you in the long run? Read on to know more about this.
How does exercise aid in positively changing the behavior of someone?
One study stated that regular exercise can help control eating behaviors by suppressing the appetite. The body does this by releasing hormones that are closely related to satiety. As a result, you have a reduced urge to eat more. This mechanism works in a similar fashion, as far as the general feeling of well-being and the motivation levels are concerned. Instead of having the satiety hormones released, the body releases the “happiness hormone” to elicit this effect.
Exercise can provide you with benefits that are both, directly and indirectly, related to behavioral change.
Who wouldn’t want to enjoy anything that can help you a lot in the long run? Of course, most of us do. However, keep in mind that you can only reap the benefits with constant dedication to exercise. It may be hard to figure out how to be motivated at first, but you will eventually get the hang of it.
These are just some of the nice benefits you can get from exercising regularly:
- This promotes a healthy weight, or at least help you get closer to your ideal one.
- It promotes strong bones and muscles.
- Exercise helps improve your heart function.
- It aids in improving your mental health by supplying your brain with happy hormones called endorphins.
- Furthermore, exercise can provide you with behavioral benefits as explained below.
Are there are any specific types of behavior that exercises can change?
In general, you can change a lot of unpleasant behaviors just by clocking in on some simple calisthenics or sweat-inducing activities. Some of the typical behaviors that exercise can somewhat alter include the following:
- Cigarette smoking
- Depressive behaviors
- Binge eating
- Lack of motivation
- Disregard for need to organize things
Numerous studies support the potential of various types of exercise in positively altering the behavior of a person, and vice versa.
In one of the studies, self-monitoring systems are used to observe how various behavioral modification techniques may vary among the systems. Some of the behavioral areas assessed include sedentary behaviors, sleep, and exercise. The respondents were asked to participate in the study for a one-week period.
The research concluded that these self-tracking systems help improve the patterns and behaviors in relation to sedentary behaviors, sleep, and physical activities like exercise. However, there is still no result to show that these same tools can help improve the behavior of people beyond this period.
In another study, the investigators tackled the effect of morphine and exercise on the genetic expression in the hippocampus of rats. Hippocampus is a part of the limbic system in your brain. The hippocampus of a rat is somewhat similar in a sense that both types are responsible for the general behavior.
The researchers eventually came up with the findings that regular exercises, regardless of the intensity, helps activate the rewarding aspect of the brain. Aside from that, this activity also encourages higher levels of activity from the hippocampus, thus further promoting the habit of exercising regularly.
In a semi-structured interview-based descriptive study, the experts had the chance to correspond with 12 elderly individuals who are at least 75 years old. For this research, the investigators probed more on the respondents’ perceived benefits and general activities related to regular exercise. Physical therapists were asked to incorporate exercises in the respondents’ usual activities.
After the study period, the experts concluded that exercises helped them see their potential of being stronger. Furthermore, they felt hopeful that this additional set of activities can help them have extended lives.
Are there any specific types of exercises that I need to perform to facilitate positive behavior change?
Actually, you can perform most types of exercises to achieve positive behavior change. You just have to make sure that the activity:
- is safe
- can help consistently raise your heart rate
- is not too lax or too difficult
- is performed at least 30 minutes at a time
- is mostly enjoyable for you
If I want to exercise, do I have to do anything else to get going?
Adequate preparation is very important before starting exercises. Preparation should not only include the physical aspect but also other parts of your personality like the mental and psychological aspects. Here are just some helpful tips to prepare for your exercises:
- Come up with a plan. One study shows that your purpose or intent can be sufficient to change your behavior towards exercise. This would mean you should formulate your goals, both short-term and long-term.
- Another thing that will perfectly work with your goals is your perception of controlling your behavior. This just means that you must believe in your plans and goals.
- In relation to these, your general outlook towards your goals and how to reach them can help decide if you’ll go that far. Do you see the activities as helpful or useless, boring or exciting? The way you see things can make a big difference!
- If you want to make a difference, experts show you must perform strenuous physical activities at least 150 minutes a week if you’re going for moderate intensity activities. If you prefer vigorous levels, you should target at least 75 minutes a week.
There are many reasons why different people resort to various forms of exercises. While some of you may want to get started due to health reasons, it’s also perfectly understandable if you prefer to do it just for the happiness hormones. Whatever your motive is for getting into the groove, just remember never to overdo it, and have fun!