It’s no secret: being fit is, and probably always will be, in.
Getting fit comes with so many different physical perks. Once we start working out and eating right, we start to notice that we’re developing a ton of strength, have energy to spare, and can rest easy at the end of the day knowing that we’re making the right decisions for health and longevity – not to mention the way our clothes fit and the way our bodies look in the mirror.
But being fit goes way beyond aesthetics. To get to that level of fitness, you have to commit to a pretty serious lifestyle change, one that can have a positive ripple effect on every other part of your life.
Let’s go beyond the flexing muscles for a second and talk about all the different ways that being fit can affect your personal life and, frankly, change your entire existence for the better.
The Pros Of Being Fit
Obviously, being fit means that you’re probably going to look better (and this is usually one of the key reasons we decide to hit the workouts in the first place), but you’re also going to notice that there’s going to be a marked change in how you feel – and that can spell out a whole world of positive change in the rest of your life.
Here’s the other good stuff that happens when you get fit:
• You have more energy. Something really fun happens when you start to eat clean, healthy foods and consistently hit the cardio and the weights – you’re probably going to see an increase in your energy levels! Regular exercise is great for your cardiovascular health since it can improve your blood flow and therefore increase your body’s energy production. [*] If you happen to lose some extra weight, even better: your body will be able to use less energy to carry out its normal functions when it doesn’t have to carry around the extra pounds of fat.
The possibilities are endless with that newfound energy: you can dedicate more of your effort to developing relationships, being there for your family, and keeping up with everyone around you.
• It’s a major confidence boost. Sure, you’re going to look better when you start developing those muscles and cutting your body fat – and that’s ultimately going to spell great things for your confidence. This is especially good news if you’ve ever suffered from insecurities or even social anxiety stemming from following a less-than-healthy regimen.
• You can participate in more activities. The fitness lifestyle is a cycle: you start eating better, working out hard, and feeling better, then you can pursue even more physical activity with your newfound fitness. Many of the activities you can do when you become fit are social: fitness classes, sports leagues, and running groups come to mind. Ultimately, many people find that embarking on the journey to get fit places them in a community of like-minded people that understand your journey and will help support you all the way through. Yes, new friends!
• You’re more disciplined. In order to eat clean every day and commit to a regular fitness routine, you need to be disciplined and stick to a pretty strict schedule. It can be hard to adjust to at first, but once you master the art of staying disciplined, it can translate to a ton of different aspects of your personal life. For example, you might find that you’re a little more regimented in your work ethic, spurring on your professional success in addition to your personal and physical pursuits.
• Your mood may experience a major boost. Exercise is great for releasing endorphins, those hormones that are responsible for helping you feel good. When you consistently train hard, you’re probably going to find that you’re riding that “exercise high” a lot more often, which can spell a better mood and more productivity down the line.
Of course, every lifestyle change is also going to come with some downsides. Let’s talk about the “cons” of getting fit:
• You’re limited in what you “can” do. That discipline that we talked about earlier is going to come with its own fair share of negatives. When you’re committing to getting fit and healthy, you’re probably going to have to make some sacrifices and give up some bad habits. For example, there’s not going to be much of a place for excessive drinking or late-night food binging when you’re maintaining your physique, which might limit the kind of social activities you’re used to doing with your friends.
This is also bad news for timing in general: a healthy lifestyle requires some major scheduling commitments. You need to get to schedule time out for your gym sessions, make room for eating your healthy pre- and post-workout meals, and allot the time for meal prepping and cooking, all of which can limit the amount of free time you’re used to having.
On the other hand, though, this is probably a blessing in disguise. Think of it this way: you’re making the conscious effort to use your time productively, rather than idly, and you’re actively making the switch to pursue the habits that will make you healthier and happier down the road.
• You might have to drop your haters. We are the friends that we keep, so if you have less-than-supportive friends in your circle, you might find that they’re actually holding you back from achieving what you set out to do.
If you begin to notice that there are people in your friend group who only have negative things to say about your newfound lifestyle change and are more interested in bringing you back down, you might need to drop them so that you can continue your personal growth.
However, this can help you to realize who your true friends are – the ones who want to see you grow and improve, not stay stagnant – and it can also clear the way for establishing a community with other fitness-oriented people who you can depend on to support you rather than tear you down.
The Bottom Line
When you begin to pursue fitness and make those big lifestyle changes, you’re going to find that it has so much more of an effect on your life than simply seeing some more muscle definition. Your whole world is going to expand from the confidence and energy you gain from treating your body the way it deserves, and you’re more likely than not to find a niche community that supports you.
If that isn’t extra motivation to get you to the gym, I don’t know what is!