I have a close friend, actually she is my best friend in the whole wide world, she is sooooooo good to me and I love her more and more each day (I know she's reading this 😉tehe). Her name is Kitty and she's my "mad" nutritionist friend, maybe you've heard of her she goes by the name Healthy Gut Girl.
Well she became a nutritionist because like many in her field she suffered her entire life with a multitude of health issues since childbirth, until finally she gave up on conventional solutions and studied until she could heal herself. Kitty did well, she improved the quality of her life tremendously and is now helping many many other people do the same. However, she still struggled with some lingering pains and recurring issues. These plagued her and drove her actually quite crazy. (Yes I know every detail).
As we both pursued our career paths and watched each other learn and grown, I noticed one thing, she was never consistent with exercise. Kitty was lucky because she always looked so slender it didn't seem to make a difference if she worked out or not.
Well as I became more and more skilled as a Pilates instructor and trainer she reaped the rewards of being my guinea pig. I encouraged her to be more consistent and low and behold the remaining issues she suffered from began to occur less and less until they were no more. Despite all the supplements, dieting, detoxing and meditating she was doing, nothing took the place of good old-fashioned exercise.
Exercise is looked at in our society as something we must to do keep our hearts strong and our bellies trim, IF YOU CAN FIT IT IN YOUR DAY. But we were not designed this way. We were designed with the ability to squat for hours on end, to lift heavy things with efficiency and grace, to store energy in our bodies and have stamina for literally hours on end without eating. Our bodies were designed to be able to fast and go without. We are incredible creatures that can accomplish incredible things. BUT ONLY if you nurture those qualities. If you don't use it, you lose it. That could not be more true when referring to the human body's physical capabilities.
One thing that is greatly overlooked, rarely talked about and crucial for everyone to know and understand. There is incredible research showing that exercise is not only good for the brain but it's actually what powers the health of the brain. Obviously what you eat plays a huge role but exercise releases certain brain chemicals that stimulate and activate neuro transmitters in the brain that keep everything sort of 'lubricated". Like a well oiled machine exercise prevents and reduces depression, it releases certain hormones and brings balance to the entire endocrine system. I work with primarily women and the first thing I notice in my clients, before any other 'side effect' of pilates, is a change of attitude. The outlook on life changes, almost immediately. This should not be taken lightly.
As for a healthy heart and a tighter waistline. Yes, those are a given but what about the lymph system in the body? You never hear about this incredible filter of ours that keeps our immune system strong and healthy. The lymph system is so unique, our entire body is covered with these little glands which by the way they just found out that these glands even cover our brain and are responsible for literally keeping our brain CLEAN!!! Well the lymph is interesting because unlike our other detox organs it doesn't have it's own pump, like the heart and the liver and the lungs. So it relies on our physical exertion to keep it 'pumping' and doing it's job. And a brisk walk down the street is NOT enough. It literally needs to be simulated daily and rigorously in order to do it's job effectively.
I cannot say enough about consistent exercise for the entire body.
So you answer your question, I exercise for the health of my body including my brain, mood, skin, organs, posture and joints and even hormones and the bi-product is a fabulous body.
Tip: in addition to my daily work schedule of teaching Pilates, I also do other forms of exercise.
I hike 1 x per week and/or run 4-8 miles per week (divided into how ever many runs - remembering the 1st mile is often the hardest so toughen up and keep going xx)
Sam Eastwood x