Exercise can lower blood pressure. The number of capillaries surrounding each leg muscle fiber increases by 5-10% following endurance training. This not only makes exercise easier but also lowers blood pressure. Numerous studies support that exercise training does indeed lower blood pressure in hypertensive subjects.
Exercise improves heart function. When you start an endurance based exercise program, expect your resting heart rate to decrease by about 1 beat per minute every week during the initial weeks. This is an indication that your heart is becoming more efficient and pumping more blood each beat. Highly trained endurance athletes can have a resting heart rate as low as 40 beats per minute or even less.
Exercise can prevent muscle loss. Sedentary adults lose 6-10 percent of their muscle mass per decade after age 30, leading to a condition called sarcopenia. Regular strength training can delay or in some cases reverse this trend. When it comes to muscle, you must use it or you will lose it!
Exercise can help you live longer. Studies on large populations have discovered the highest death rates in those who are the least fit. Those who are the most fit have the lowest death rates.
Exercise can improve sex life. A study published by the Harvard School of Public Health found that men who exercised vigerously were half as likely to experience sexual dysfunction when compared to men who did no exercise.
Exercise can improve brain function. Research has discovered that the fittest kids generally score the highest on test scores. Older adults who are fit show less cognitive decline compared to their sedentary counterparts.
Exercise can speed up wound healing. A study out of Ohio State found that skin wounds healed an average of 10 days faster in the exercise group compared to the non exercise group.
Exercise can help the elderly. A study in the Journal of the American Medical Association reported gains in leg strength of 374 percent over baseline in men over 90 years of age who began strength training in as little as 8 weeks! Other research has found a reversal in normal age related characteristics in the muscle of seniors who took up weight lifting.