The phrase "use it or lose it" can apply to almost anything.
And Researchers in Ohio have found that this phrase rings
especially true when it comes to maintaining good exercise
habits. Simply put, if you start exercising and then stop,
or only exercise sporadically, you'll lose the physical gains
you've made along the way - and you could lose some of the
accrued psychological benefits as well.
Scientists looked at the exercise habits of 28 people with
chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, a lung disorder. Participants
completed a 10-week exercise rehabilitation program and were
given a home exercise program to continue on their own. A
year later, the researchers contacted the participants to
see if they had continued exercising.
At the end of the initial program, all of the participants
showed gains in physical endurance, as well as in cognitive
and psychological functioning. Subjects who continued to exercise
during the following year maintained these benefits, but those
who had stopped exercising regularly showed "significant declines"
on all physical and mental tests.
The message here is simple: If you want to improve yourself,
physically, mentally and emotionally, start an exercise program
and stick with it. Your doctor of chiropractic can help design
an exercise program that will help you get your mind and body
in better shape over the long haul.
Emery CF, Shermer RL, Hauck ER, et al. Cognitive and psychological
outcomes of exercise in a 1-year follow-up study of patients
with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Health Psychology
For more information on the benefits of exercise, visit www.chiroweb.com/find/archives/sports/exercise/index.html.