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Why you should be exercising!

Are you one who likes to set New Year Resolutions? While many of you may not take the time to actually write your goals down, I would venture to say that most of you probably do at least stop and contemplate some area of your life where you need to improve. In December of 2018, a group from Statista conducted a study to identify what American’s planned to set as a New Year Resolution for 2019. Here are the top 7 goals that were identified through the study:

• 59% of those surveyed stated they wanted to exercise more
• 54% wanted to eat healthier
• 51% would like to save money
• 48% wanted to lose weight
• 38% would like to see a reduction in stress levels
• 35% wanted to manage their finances better by sticking to budget
• 31% just wanted to get more sleep

Do any to these goals sound like the goals you set, or contemplated? How are you doing so far? If you have stuck to your plan, great job, keep it up. If you have struggled to find consistency, deep breaths, keep working. If you have already fallen off the wagon… time to get back on! There is a reason that over 50% of people discontinue their goals within 6 weeks. Goals like these require change, and let’s face it, CHANGE IS HARD!

As a physical therapist, I found this list very interesting. What would you think if I told you that by focusing on just one of these seven goals, you have the opportunity to make improvements in almost all seven? Are you aware that consistent exercise has the ability to meet almost all of these goals?
The benefits of exercise have been well documented. Just do a quick Google search and you will find numerous websites that describe in detail the benefits of exercise. Exercise is the “Gold Standard” when it comes to your health. Don’t believe me? Here are a few facts that I will share

• Exercise has long been proven to aid in weight loss
The Anxiety and Depression Association of America reports that exercise reduces stress
The National Sleep Foundation reports that people who exercise fall asleep faster and sleep longer.
American Diabetes Association states exercise can lower blood glucose levels and may allow for reduced dependence on insulin or medication
The American Heart Association states that exercise helps to lower blood pressure or cholesterol and can help lower the risk of heart attacks and strokes.
The American Cancer Society reports that studies of cancer survivors who have been diagnosed with breast, colorectal, prostate, and ovarian cancer have a lower risk of cancer recurrence and improved survival compared to those who are inactive
• Exercise has shown the ability to reduce pain and improve mobility in those dealing with chronic or long-lasting pain.

Exercise has a way of helping us improve our overall health, both mentally and physically. No other medication or treatment has the ability to treat such a diverse range of illnesses. If you have set a goal of losing weight, reducing anxiety/stress, sleeping better, or just being healthier, exercise may very well be your safest and most economical avenue to accomplish those goals.

But wait, how is exercise more economical? Well, exercise is very much like buying a smart thermostat or a new LED lightbulb. These items are typically a little higher priced, but we purchase these items in hopes that we will save money in the long run. Consider that any money spent on exercise can be seen as a means to cut cost down the road. Consistency in exercise may very well help to reduce your dependence on medication costs. Improving your health may result in fewer visits to your physician and fewer tests, meaning less cost to you. The great thing about exercise is that there are so many ways to exercise that there is really no need for fancy equipment, and most can be done within your very own home. There will be some of you who feel the need to exercise at a gym. While these gyms may help you to meet your fitness goals, there is a cost for membership. For those of you who do wish to attend a gym, there are some potential cost savings available to you. If you are Medicare eligible, several gyms offer a Silver Sneakers program that you may participate in. If you are not Medicare eligible, you may contact your insurance provider and ask about any incentive program they have available to you. Some carriers may cover your enrollment fees, and some others even help cover a portion of the monthly fees. The great thing about exercise is that it can be done almost anywhere. All it takes is discipline and consistency.

If you are looking to engage in an exercise program and you need assistance getting started, please let us help. Here at NEA Baptist we have trained professionals who can assess your needs and help you initiate a program. Please contact one of our four Outpatient Therapy Clinics in Jonesboro, Paragould, and Trumann, or contact our NEA Wellness Center and let us help you get started.

Change is hard, but the positive effects of exercise will be well worth your effort. It’s never too late to start a New Year’s Resolution. So, start moving today and allow exercise to improve your overall health.

Jeff Ramsey, PT
Certified Pain Specialist, Certified in Dry Needling


NEA Baptist Physical Therapy Locations:
909 Enterprise Drive
Jonesboro, AR 72401
Phone: 870-336-1530

NEA Baptist Hospital:
4800 E. Johnson Ave.
Jonesboro, AR 72401
Phone: 870-936-8000

516 Industrial Park Access Rd
Trumann, AR 72472
Phone: (870) 483-6131

4700 W Kingshighway
Paragould, AR 72450
Phone: (870) 936-7652

Wellness Center
2617 Phillips Dr
Jonesboro, AR 72401
Phone: (870) 936-7955