advertisement



Balanced Living


Print this page | Sign up for free e-bulletins
 | Bookmark This Page

Why Must We Exercise?

why must we exercise inside

The idea of "taking exercise" would have seemed ridiculous to our ancestors. Throughout much of history mere survival demanded a level of physical activity that made rest an ultimate luxury. Rarely have people been able to be so sedentary that they needed to exercise apart from their routine of daily living. But in today's industrialized world most people do not have to hunt, fish, or work the fields to get food. We do not have to walk or run long distances to get from one place to another, or chop down trees to build shelters and make fires. Most of us sit while we work, sit while we travel, and sit during our leisure time. The exercise period is a distinctly modern invention.

The news media tell us constantly that physical fitness is not what it should be in our society, that standards of fitness are lax, that children today are not physically fit. The term fitness refers to adaptation. A fit individual is well adapted to his or her environment, able to respond to its changing demands. Many people today who are physically inactive are fit enough for the minimal demands of their comfortable, nonchallenging environments. If you have enough energy and muscle tone to walk up the occasional flight of stairs, mow the grass on weekends, walk the dog, and bend down to open the dishwasher, you may feel you have no reason or need to take up an exercise program. I hear this argument often.

The flaw in it is that our bodies evolved in very demanding environments and are meant to be used. If they are not used, they deteriorate faster than they should. Many of the illnesses that plague our society result from underuse of bodies. Clearly the prevalence of heart and artery disease correlates as much with lack of aerobic exercise as it does with unhealthy diets. Insufficient aerobic activity also predisposes us to musculoskeletal disorders, gastrointestinal problems, nervous and emotional illnesses, and a long list of other ailments.

Read more articles from Dr. Weil on exercise and fitness.

The Weil Vitamin Advisor
Get your FREE personalized vitamin recommendation & supplement plan today!

Dr. Weil on Healthy Aging
Your Online Guide to the Anti-Inflammatory Diet. Start eating for your health - begin your free trial now.

Dr. Weil's Spontaneous Happiness
Achieve emotional well-being
in just eight weeks!
Start your 10-day free trial now!

Vitamin Library
Supplement your knowledge with Dr. Weil's essential vitamin facts. Learn why they are necessary and more.

Dr. Weil's Optimum Health Plan
Your 8-week plan to wellness.
Begin your journey today!
 

Dr. Weil's Head-to-Toe
Wellness Guide

Your guide to natural health.
Use the Wellness Guide today!

Dr. Weil's Anti-Inflammatory Diet Food Pyramid
Our interactive tool can help improve overall health through diet.

Condition Care Guide
Learn about health conditions from acne to vertigo, and Dr. Weil's view of the best treatment options for each.

Healthy Recipes
Discover a treasure trove of healthy, healing foods and creative, delicious ways to prepare them.

Q&A Library
Over 2,000 questions from you
and their corresponding answers
from Dr. Weil.

 
Copyright © 2014 Weil Lifestyle, LLC
Information on this web site is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician or other healthcare professional. You should not use the information on this web site for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing any medication or other treatment.

Ad Choice
Advertising Notice

This Site and third parties who place advertisements on this Site may collect and use information about your visits to this Site and other websites in order to provide advertisements about goods and services of interest to you. If you would like to obtain more information about these advertising practices and to make choices about online behavioral advertising, please click here