16 Reasons to Work Out That Have Nothing to Do with Beauty Standards

I have tried countless times to get into a workout routine. I have tried challenges, classes, motivational boards and countless other plans to attempt to motivate myself to keep with a schedule and get moving. However, I recently realized my flaw: My entire mindset is focused completely on the external. I want to look good. I want to lose weight and even a few pants sizes, and that is what I am focused on. But that’s no way to motivate yourself. There’s so much more to you than the external. If you are so focused on how you look, you’ll inevitably lose motivation when you don’t see results right away. So, if you’re anything like me, here are some reasons to work out that have absolutely nothing to do with beauty standards. 

1. Because of the Mental Release

Working out can do wonders for the mind. It’s one of the healthiest ways to blow off some steam when you’re stressed out or anxious, helping to clear the mind of past and future stress and allowing you to focus on the here and now. When college life gets to be too overwhelming, just go for a walk, a run, or hit the weights. Whatever it takes to get you away from the clusterf*ck of life and get moving. 

2. Because it Makes You Feel Confident

It’s far more than just getting skinnier or getting more toned. This confidence has nothing to do with how you look; it has everything to do with how you feel. It’s a feeling of empowerment when you set a new personal best, running that extra half mile or lifting more weight than you had the previous workout. 

3. Because Exercise Helps Combat Depression 

It’s scientifically proven that exercising releases endorphins which, in turn, combats depression. Continuously working out and taking care of your body is proven to help with mental health. (Note: That does not mean in any way that it’s a replacement for medication or therapy! Only assistance.)

Courtesy: Ivan Torres

4. Because it Helps You Get Stronger

I’m not going to lie, a large motivation for me to work out is to gain muscle. Not in a way that involves looking sexier; more in the way that I want to be able to pick up my sister or my fiancée easily. I want to be able to lift a full-grown person.

5. Because of the Ability to Say “Yes” to Adventure

My bucket list is a mile long. Want to go hiking? Yes! Want to go backpacking across Europe? H*ll yes! Want to go skydiving? Maybe…. My point is that I want to tackle all sorts of opportunities that life throws my way. However, without a strong foundation of health, doing those things becomes more and more difficult. I don’t want to miss out by letting my health dictate what I can and can’t do.

6. Because of that “Look What I Can Do!” Feeling

The body is an amazing machine. As my body improves and grows, I am constantly astounded at what it can do and achieve with a little bit of work. We are limitless. 

7. Because Moving Your Body Feels Good

Our bodies are made to move. Whether it’s going for a run, doing a full-body workout, or just getting up and spending a few minutes stretching, we have to move our bodies. Ever notice how, when you sit on the couch all day, your body feels sluggish, stiff and sore? It’s your body telling you it’s time to move.

8. Because it Helps You Sleep Better at Night

I suffer from chronic insomnia, so trust me, I know how it feels to not be able to sleep. Working out may not only improve the ease at which you fall asleep but the efficiency of your sleep as well. 

Courtesy: Bruce Mars

9. Because of the Anti-Aging Effect

And I’m not talking about wrinkles or having a young body for the rest of your life. I’m talking about feeling younger. Feeling like you’re 20 when you’re 50 years old. Working out increases bone and muscle mass and prevents age-related muscle loss that causes your body to slow down. Want to climb mountains when you’re 70? Do it! It’s never too late to stop that clock. 

10. Because Exercise Improves Your Sex Life

Yes, I said it. And it has nothing to do with looking sexier or anything like that, although it will help you feel sexier. Working out increases your stamina, your flexibility, your strength – do you see where I’m going with this? 

11. Because it Can Be Fun

It is possible! Yeah, the thought of running a few miles can make you want to hibernate under the covers for the entirety of winter, but there are plenty of ways to work out that can be incredibly fun. Go for a run with your dog, take a dance class, go to a trampoline park with your friends, stream yoga on your computer in your bedroom where you can stay in your pajamas– there is so much you can do that doesn’t require a gym. The possibilities are endless.

12. Because You’re Tired of Being Tired

I don’t know about you, but I am so tired of being tired. I’m tired of my body lagging, feeling sluggish and slow no matter how much sleep I get. I’m tired of lagging mentally, my brain feeling like an Internet Explorer tab. I’m tired, girl. When you’re tired, working out can be the last thing that you want to do, but something as simple as a ten-minute jog or a walk outside can do wonders to clear that fog. 

13. Because of the Full Body Effects

Working out reduces your risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, high cholesterol and even cancer. It reduces your risk of a ton of diseases that could wrack your body and promotes a healthier living instead.  

Courtesy: Laurine Bailly

14. Because of the “Me” Time

Working out is a time when you can focus completely and totally on yourself. You are focusing on your mind and body and there is nothing else to think about. Sometimes, that time to just focus on yourself is a much-needed break from the hustle and bustle of worrying about everything and everyone else. This is a time for you and you deserve it. 

15. Because You Can

It’s easy to see exercise as a chore, but why not look at it as a blessing? Just think: There are people out there who would kill to get to move the way you can. Your body works. Every day. It works incredibly d*mn well. Your workout is a celebration of that. 

16. Because of the Results, Baby!

This is where the whole road leads: the results. There is nothing like serious gains to make you feel good about yourself. So, go run that extra mile, lift that extra weight and keep seeing results that make you want to push yourself further. Set your goals and use your newfound strength to pull yourself up towards them. 

Want to see more HCFSU? Be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on InstagramTwitter and Pinterest!