How Exercise Promotes Productivity
November 24, 2020
Besides improving our physical health and helping us with weight management, exercise also provides essential benefits to our mental health.
Exercise influences the structure and functioning of the brain, which is why physical activity is a crucial factor for improving productivity.
In this article, we will elaborate further on the importance of exercise to mental health, productivity, and cognitive functioning.
How Exercise Improves Productivity
When exercising, our bodies experience different metabolic responses that benefit the brain, including:
- Release of neurotrophic factors (NTFs), biomolecules that contribute to the development and survival of neurons.
- Stimulates blood flow to neural circuits that support cognitive functioning.
- Increases glucose levels, the brain’s main fuel source.
Benefits of Exercise on Cognitive Functions
Our performance regarding productivity heavily relies on our cognitive functioning and development. Cognitive functions are those actions that involve mental tasks, such as perceiving and memorizing. As well as reasoning, analyzing, or knowing.
According to several studies, exercise provides the following benefits to the development of cognitive functions:
- Increases the volume of gray matter in the frontal and hippocampal regions.
- Increases levels of neurotrophic factors
- Improves cognitive abilities like learning and concentration. As well as memory, self-control, and multitasking in young and older adults.
- Leads to higher academic achievement in young adults and children.
- Prevents and reduces the risk of the decline of cognitive functions, and hence, the risk of developing mental health issues like dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
- Improves the way the brain conducts order to the system of interconnected brain cells.
How to Successfully Incorporate an Exercise Routine into Your Everyday Life
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), over 80% of adults and teenagers do not meet the amount of physical activity recommended for their age group. Meanwhile, the HHS reported that 28% of Americans — both children and adults — lead physically inactive lifestyles.
To help you incorporate an exercise routine into your schedule, we recommend the following tips:
- Identify a physical activity recommended for your physical condition. The intensity and amount of exercise that your body needs depending on your age, gender, and health status. Otherwise, you can either injure yourself or fail to meet your body’s physiological needs. To know the level of physical activity you need, we recommend checking the CDC guidelines.
- Find a physical activity that you enjoy. Try out different activities to see which one you enjoy the most to commit to on a long-term basis.
- Get a work-out buddy. With a work-out buddy, you are doubling up your commitment to exercise — you owe it to yourself and to someone else. Plus, being around other people makes exercise more fun. Try asking a friend to join your work-outs, engage in a physical activity done in groups, or hiring a personal trainer.
- Consider exercise as a medium to master new skills. Focusing on improvement and self-growth may help to commit to exercising regularly. For example, you can master yoga, dancing, martial arts, or swimming.
Z.E.N. Foods offers healthy meal delivery plans to complement your workout routine. Our consultants can help you create a menu that adjusts to your physical needs, cravings, and budget. Let us help you!