Like many adults, I fall off my exercise routine periodically. Sometimes it’s due to illness or lack of energy or simply because I’m stretched too thin and don’t see the room in my schedule.
I Reconnected with an Exercise Routine
I got back on track walking 2-3 miles about three weeks ago. Each day it feels easier and my muscle memory operates at full power. Here are some of the benefits that I’m reconnecting with:
- My tight muscles appreciate the stretching and opening up caused by sitting at a desk all day.
- I drink more water.
- My mind, body, and spirit benefit from the endorphins which trigger positive feelings.
- The extra oxygen in my blood makes my brain perform better so that I get some of my best ideas when I’m walking (the shower is a good place too).
So, I’m out for a walk feeling stronger than I have since I recommitted to exercising and my mind is bouncing from one good idea to the next. Suddenly, I think about texting my appreciation to my daughter’s boyfriend. This would make the 2nd time ever that we’ve texted. I only met him a few months ago so this idea seems to come from the right side of my brain and not the left (which is the stronger side of the two for me).
I Started Laughing
Next, I start laughing—hard. I know exactly what’s happening because I remember it from previous exercise routines. It may sound crazy, but when all those good hormones start flowing, I need to reach out with words of kindness, appreciation, and love. My heart literally and figuratively expands.
If I haven’t talked to my brother recently, I decide to send him my love. Thinking about one of my kids, I want him or her to know how proud I am of their adulting efforts. Thinking about a former colleague, I suddenly need to tell her I miss her. You get the idea.
I am feeling so good that I want to share it with my corner of the world. Sometimes the messages are a little over the top, so I don’t send any texts until I’ve finished my exercise and had a moment to rethink if the text is a bit too much 😊 That said, because these feelings seem to spring from an unguarded part of my heart I try to send as many of the positive messages I can without overthinking it.
How Could My Story Motivate You?
Why am I sharing this? Because maybe consistent exercise could help you feel kinder too. Wouldn’t it be amazing if consistent exercise helped you share more love in your corner of the world? You could be motivated to send positive messages to those you care about most. Or, complete some other random act of kindness.
Imagine the ripple effect. Your kind act could inspire the recipient to pay it forward in their circle of influence.
Science backs up the idea that random acts of kindness can increase the giver and receiver’s happiness. Performing five acts of kindness every week for six weeks increases helpful—or “pro-social”—attitudes and tendencies toward others.
Study participants who performed five acts of kindness every week saw a significant boost in their happiness as long as they performed their five acts in a single day rather than spread out over each week. Many acts of kindness are small, so spreading them out might make them harder to remember and savor.1
Give It a Try!
If you’re struggling with consistent exercise, maybe a positive outcome such as greater kindness and happiness provides additional motivation. Maybe you need a reason that connects to the greater good 😊
Because of the potential benefits, it seems worth it to give it a try. Do you get the same feelings that I do?
If you’re curious, I suggest running a simple experiment with this eBook to track the outcome for yourself.