Did you know that regular exercise is good for you? Have you heard that there are benefits to your health if you make physical fitness a key part of your lifestyle?
Given that you are taking the time to read an article on a site dedicated to proactively improving your married life, I’m gonna go ahead and assume you are not a moron and you do not currently live in a cave. Of course you know that exercise is good for you!
So do you have a regular fitness routine that you maintain as a high priority in your life? Me neither, at least not on the consistent basis that I should. I tend to operate in extremes with my exercise commitment. Earlier this year, I came to the sober realization that I was fat. Not obese, not disgusting, but fat, soft and lazy nonetheless. I got fired up.
I decided that it was time (again) for a change. I bought the P90X Extreme Home Fitness System that you may have seen on TV, as it is one of the most successful infomercials of all time. I can tell you that P90X is tough, its intense and it works remarkably well if you commit yourself to the program. I was totally plugged in to the workouts, waking up at 6:00 a.m. six days a week to sweat my butt off in my basement while Tony Horton implored me to “Bring It” day after day on my wide-screen TV.
Over the course of about eight weeks, I lost 23 pounds and felt fantastic. I turned my attention to cycling and completed my first Century (100 mile) bicycle ride on my 30th birthday in July. I was never a threat to Lance Armstrong, but I was in the best shape of my life. In the weeks since this pinnacle, I’ve slacked off a bit but remain at a healthy weight that I can maintain with a moderate fitness plan working out three mornings per week.
It just so happened that my wife discovered a love of (and talent for) running this summer as well. She would get out in the evenings after we got the kids to b ed to take a brisk run around the neighborhood. She “peaked out” in her own way by participating in several 5K events in our area, and let me tell you that she is looking great!
But this article is not about specific fitness routines or getting you to Sweat to the Oldies. And, although I’m pretty pumped about my accomplishments this year, it’s also not about tooting my horn (I am happy to brag on my running wife, though). This article is about something much more important that I realized along the way.
It makes a lot of sense when you take the time to think about it. Exercise reduces stress, increases self-esteem and helps you to feel more attractive (I love it when my wife feels more attractive:)).
Seriously. Take a moment to visualize yourself and your spouse (unless they already look like a Greek Goddess like my dear wife…she does read this blog, you know) in great physical condition. I bet you are both smiling in your vision, and for good reason.
I think we have all heard repeatedly about the great benefits of exercise as they pertain to our personal health. But I doubt you have given much thought to the important role your own fitness can play in your marriage and family life.
In Part 2 of this series, I want to share with you a short article that was recently released by the Mayo Clinic outlining the Seven Benefits of Regular Physical Activity. Predictably, the article is focused almost entirely on personal health benefits. I think it will be fun and motivational to look at these same Seven Benefits and how they can help make your marriage awesome.
After all, what good is a great body without a spouse to share it with?
Photos courtesy of kevindooley
Dustin Riechmann created Engaged Marriage to help other married couples live a life they love (especially) when they feel too busy to make it happen. He has many passions, including sharing ways to enjoy an awesome marriage in 15 minutes a day, but his heart belongs with his wife Bethany and their three young kids.