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What's the Big Deal about Exercising Regularly?

What's the Big Deal about Exercising Regularly?


In today’s world of non-stop stimuli, there’s always something to do besides exercising. Between work, kids, friends, TV, the internet, shopping and driving here and there, we have enough built-in excuses for skipping workouts for weeks if not months. But is that a big deal?

 Karla Walsh published an article in Redbook in December of 2016 called 5 Things that Happen to Your Body When You Quit Exercising for a Month. Here’s what she had to say about the effects of falling off the fitness wagon for a month or more.

1.Your heart ticks differently.

"After four days of zero aerobic exercise, your heart becomes less efficient, so you may notice shortness of breath sooner," says Michele Olson, Ph.D., professor of exercise science at Auburn University. Too busy to hit spin class? Counteract this by incorporating more activity into your everyday tasks.

  1. Your muscles get a little lazy.

“Researchers found that the average person maintains a relatively constant amount of strength despite four weeks of inactivity. Your muscles may not fire as energetically as they would had you not taken a timeout (so those 10-pound dumbbells may feel a little heavier than they did last month), but you won't be starting off at square one when you come back from your month-long hiatus.”

  1. The skills you worked hardest for disappear.

"As a general rule, the fitness activities that take the most effort to master and maintain will be the first things to go when you ease up," says Mark Schneider, a personal trainer at Movement Minneapolis. On the contrary, for something that comes naturally, it usually takes more than 30 days to recognize a difference. So if you're able to run a 5K with no sweat, try busting out those miles again to ease yourself back into a routine.” 

  1. Your motivation starts to wane.

“Generally, the longer you skip out on your workouts, the more difficult it becomes to feel inspired to get back in there. So don't force yourself to go 110 percent as soon as you return. Instead, "start by doing about 70 percent of what you had been doing before your break, both in time and intensity," Olson says. And don’t be afraid to try something new to infuse some excitement back into your routine."

  1. Your body will crave some type of movement.

“Between high-intensity interval training (HIIT) and speedy circuit work, there's no longer a need to spend hours in the gym in order to score health benefits. In fact, if you were fairly fit before your break, establishing a streamlined workout schedule may be all you need to maintain your endurance base for several months, which is pretty much perfect if you're still struggling to squeeze it all in.”

Stopping and starting your exercise routine may be a sign that you need to reprioritize what maintaining or improving your fitness means to you. At Challenge, our products can’t make you stop skipping workouts, but they can help you push a little harder and get the results you want. We help people get more from their workouts. Visit us at