“[In regards] to human health … exercising aggressively is a really key component to us being happy.” ~ Nate Lind
Your body is a temple. And no temple can stand the test of time if it’s not built well and properly cared for.
Self-love and self-respect take many forms, but most people focus on the internal and ethereal expressions of valuing oneself; positive self-talk, belief in oneself, acceptance of one’s strengths and weaknesses. But just as important are the external actions we take to treat ourselves properly and care for our own well-being. Exercising aggressively is the truest physical manifestation of our inner health and spiritual balance. And it’s all about understanding the internal and external benefits, strengthening ourselves, and training for the adventures life has in store.
The Balance of Internal and External
Let’s be honest; if you don’t respect or value yourself, you aren’t actually going to make efforts to treat yourself well. As you begin to find your mental, emotional, and spiritual center and improve your relationship with yourself, you’ll notice a change and improvement in your focus, energy, and personal growth. The best way to channel that new improvement and surge of energy for positive change? Get active and implement a solid exercise program.
Getting in shape and being more athletic and active is about a lot more than just the physical change that you’ll experience. Sure, looking better in your bathing suit is a wonderful perk. But there are an innumerable number of other benefits that come along with pushing your body to a healthier state of existence.
The Mayo Clinic outlines six compelling benefits of exercise for men; The first is a better overall quality of life. Getting active can alleviate depression and anxiety, while also relieving tension and anger and increasing energy levels.
The second is that regular exercise can boost testosterone levels. As men age, they can often times see a decrease in their body’s testosterone production – Research shows that being active and participating in a regular exercise regimen can help to counter this slowing-down of testosterone production.
If that’s not enough, exercise can also lower the risk of cardiovascular disease, lower the risk of certain types of cancer, and help live a longer life. These physical benefits cultivate a healthier and happier atmosphere for you to continue to grow and improve your life in all areas and aspects.
Exercise is also about more than improving your health. It’s about the lessons learned in the struggle and pain that exercise can bring with it. Former Black Flag lead singer and motivational speaker Henry Rollins has been a life-long proponent of weight lifting and exercise, and has written numerous articles on the subject. In his piece “Iron and The Soul” from oldtimestrongman.com, Rollins discusses the lessons he learned in his younger years through his time in the gym.
“It took me years to fully appreciate the value of the lessons I have learned from the Iron. I used to think that it was my adversary, that I was trying to lift that which does not want to be lifted. I was wrong. When the Iron doesn’t want to come off the mat, it’s the kindest thing it can do for you. If it flew up and went through the ceiling, it wouldn’t teach you anything. That’s the way the Iron talks to you. It tells you that the material you work with is that which you will come to resemble… I learned that nothing good comes without work and a certain amount of pain. When I finish a set that leaves me shaking, I know more about myself. When something gets bad, I know it can’t be as bad as that workout.”
The Vehicle for Adventure
Family, friends, experiences, adventures – The truth is that these things are what make our lives fulfilling and exciting. But these things become harder to enjoy and be part of when we physically are unable to participate in or handle them.
Exercise helps to maintain healthy muscle function and joint health, and ensures you’re able to stay active for years to come. If you want to get out into the world and climb mountains with your wife, surf with your kids, or walk the streets of Paris with your friends, you need to keep your temple in tip-top shape.
The lessons learned in the gym are often the lessons learned in business. There can be no success without struggle. There can be no new achievement without putting in the work to slowly grasp it. And there can be no change without putting in the work and getting stronger.