6 Reasons Why Commuters Need to Exercise
6 Reasons Why Commuters Need to Exercise
Here in California, it’s hard not to be a part of the group known as the commuters. The average commute time in the Bay Area is 34 minutes. While in San Jose, the average commute time is 29 minutes one way. Though this has been increasing each year due to the increase of population in Silicon Valley and surrounding areas.
How Does Commuting Affect our Bodies?
We don’t really give it much thought on how commuting at least an hour a day can impact our bodies. Commuting for a long period of time can have many physical and mental side effects like:
- Herniated disc
- High Blood Pressure
- Stress & Anxiety
- Pollution Exposure
- Increase your risk for a heart attack
- Lower Happiness
Why Do Commuters Need to Exercise?
Finding time to exercise when you commute can be difficult. Though if you are a commuter, you should consider the hours you spend sitting down. To avoid the many conditions of commuting
Decrease Your Body Fat
Your body mass index (BMI), is an approximate measurement of your body’s metabolic status. Sitting for long periods of time without exercise has proven to increase body fat which increases your BMI. A staggering 56% of Americans who have sedentary jobs are overweight according to studies done by CareerBuilders. If you’re in the overweight categories now, regular exercise and a low carb diet can help bring your BMI down to normal levels. The good news is that the more regularly you exercise, the more you are able to work off the body fat because muscle “burns off” more calories, effectively speeding up your metabolism and shedding the weight.
Exercising Decreases Anxiety
Exercising doesn’t just help with losing weight, it also helps decrease anxiety. When you exercise your levels of endorphins increase, stress and worry also start to diminish. When you exercise, you refocus your attention from your daily problems to the workout itself. Commuters tend to have a higher level of stress due to unoccupied thoughts on long drives to and from work. Adding in a gym routine for at least 30 minutes can improve your overall mentality within a week. We don’t suggest ignoring your daily issues though with a clear mind, you approach them with renewed energy and even some new ways to figure out solutions.
Sleep Better at Night
Physical activities during the day like exercise help your body to engage during the day. Exerting your body during a workout helps your circulatory system functioning properly. Sitting can decrease blood flow and cause circulatory issues in the bottom half of the body. A regular workout will help correct that. Although sleep experts recommend that you not exercise right before you go to bed, exercise during the day will make you tired and sleep better at night. A well-rested body also improves your immune system and even lowers your risk for heart disease, diabetes, and cognitive impairment.
The most commonly experienced chronic pain in middle-aged and older adults is arthritis. People develop arthritis due to abnormalities in the cartilage, outgrowth of bones in the joints, and overuse. Much like sitting all day, typing for hours, or even hold a certain position for an extended period of time. Like a steering wheel. Unlike the other physical benefits of exercise, reducing the chances of arthritis doesn’t depend on heavy duty aerobic activity or weight training. Types of activities to improve the range of motion is stretching and flexibility training. Exercises like yoga, Tai Chi, and slow movement stretching will increase the range of movement of your joints. This will lower your risk of injury through muscle tears or torn ligaments, and in the process protect your joints from damage caused by overuse.
Have More Energy
When you are less active whether it’s sitting in the car or sitting at your desk, you will lose energy. This happens because your body set itself in a resting state even though you aren’t sleeping. Get up and get moving. When you become more active, you circulation increase meaning more blood to your body parts and regulatory heart rate. Because your body is functioning more efficiently when your active, you’ve got more oxygen to fuel your body’s cells. You also feel fewer aches and pains and gradually increase your strength. As a result, you can go about your daily activities feeling less fatigued, stressed, and with more energy. Although going to the gym early in the morning or late in the afternoon may feel like the last thing you want to do, once you put exercise into your daily routines, these workouts will actually seem less tiresome because you’ll feel more mentally and physically capable of carrying them out.
Improve The Immune System
You may feel like taking time away from work to go to the gym is a luxury you can’t afford, but by improving your overall health, exercise can help you ward off both acute and chronic illnesses. You’ll get fewer colds, be less prone to the flu, and viral illnesses. While commuters are often exposed to many types of health impacting issues like poor air quality, terms at work and public health, a regular workout can help.