The most common question I get from those who are inactive but debating whether or not to start working out is “Why do I need to exercise? “To get stronger” I typically reply. “But why does being strong matter?” Which is an honest question. The average persons day revolves around sitting in a car, sitting at a desk, or sitting on the couch; none of which requires strength to execute properly. However, the car, the desk, and the couch are only recently-added conveniences in terms of evolutionary biology.
[tweet_box design=”default”]The human body is not meant to be weak, it’s not designed to live in comfortable surroundings.[/tweet_box] Sitting is killing us and industrialized food production is making us fat, while freezing cold showers alleviate depression, and intermittent fasting reduces the chance of diabetes and heart disease. So, the honest answer is that physical strength doesn’t play a much of a role in the modern world. It does, however, play a huge role in our physical and mental wellbeing. Our ancestors were strong, not for recreational reasons, but because the environment they evolved in required them to be.
What physical benefits come from being strong?
1. Increased Human Growth Hormone (HGH) levels.
By becoming strong, [tweet_box design=”default”]your body releases growth hormone which helps your muscles adapt to resistance training.[/tweet_box] Growth Hormone is important because it prevents fat storage and regulates your blood glucose levels, decreasing your chance of diabetes. High levels of HGH also leads to increased bone density, whihc prevents injuries.
2. Lower levels of inflammation.
Hitting your head, scraping your knee, ear infections, and stress, cause your body to react in the form of inflammation. Acute inflammation (short and fast) occurs when you experience one of the above instances, and your body responds by increasing blood flow and immune cell delivery to the affected area. This usually appears in the form of swelling and redness. Chronic inflammation occurs when the body doesn’t turn off the inflammatory response and, as a result, further damages the affected area. Most common forms of chronic inflammation are heart disease, depression, and metabolic disease. Being strong reduces the amount of inflammation needed by the body to correct such maladies and prevents the likelihood of inflammation becoming chronic.
3. Your body becomes more economical.
Strength is based on the ability to fire motor neurons faster and more efficiently. Whether you’re a cyclist, dancer, boxer, or yoga instructor, being strong makes your body execute movement more effectively.
What mental benefits come from being strong?
4. Increased levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor.
BDNF, similar to HGH, is a protein that encourages growth and differentiation of new neurons and synapses in the brain. In particular, it can leads to a dramatic improvements in memory and delay cognitive decline.
5. Increased confidence and emotional stability.
Self-confidence is determined by the values an individual hold him or herself accountable to. Having strong personal relationships, being physically attractive, being able to defend and provide for your family, are all things that people base their self-worth; and all of them can be improved through physical strength. Being strong requires that you workout, having a successful workout regiment almost always involves creating a social circle of like-minded workout companions. [tweet_box design=”default”]Strength also improves your physical appearance, and the ability to take care of yourself[/tweet_box], (and those around you).
A lot of this is related to the anti-inflammatory effects of being strong mentioned earlier.
We have done an excellent job of making the world around us comfortable.
The underlying goal of all technical innovations it to make life easier with less work. Unfortunately, living in a comfortable environment goes against every aspect of our biology. Physical strength derived from resistance training, cardiovascular exercise, and other acute stressors may not seem very practical in today’s world, but it’s 100% necessary to live a long and healthy life.
Do you agree? Let us know in comments!