Motivation Required


Graphic by Carl Faust, Vanessa Mark and Anne Schill

Exercise? Pff. That’s how most people react when they’re asked about that topic a week into New Year’s resolutions. Everybody likes to think that they’ll succeed in the challenges of healthier eating and hitting the gym like a macho, it’s a brand new year, right? Unfortunately, that confidence usually disappears when a month later when they walk past the mirror and look nothing like they envisioned they would.

The media often associates exercise with finding a new sense of confidence in a chiseled, fit appearance. While it’s true that when you look good, you tend to feel better, it’s important to recognize that it’s actually more common to have a different healthy body type from what is publicized as the “perfect” figure. As long as exercise is making you happier and healthier, there is no need to feel like your routine is not effective just because you don’t end up looking like a sporting gear model.

The more important thing to keep in mind when you are exercising is how you feel, not how you look. The feel-good neurotransmitters, or endorphins, released by physical activity create what is often referred to as a “runner’s high.” Mayo Clinic, a medical research group, lists other emotional benefits of exercise as relaxation, better sleep quality, increased self-confidence and lowered symptoms of depression and anxiety.

But while the emotional and psychological impacts of exercise can significantly improve your quality of life, the physical benefits are potentially life-saving. Especially in adolescence, when teens are still developing muscles and bones, movement is imperative to a healthier future. According to Nemours, a nonprofit children’s health organization, exercising reduces risk of diseases like diabetes and high blood pressure, both of which are becoming increasingly common among teens.

Luckily for you, The Talon has assembled some tips you need to know in order to make your exercise experience effective and easy. You’re welcome.