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Need some motivation to get out there and get fit? Read this and you will be itching to get up and get active!

Check out these five top ways that exercise will help improve your life:

1. Weight control

Whether  you have a lot of weight to lose or just want to maintain your current weight, exercise is the surest and healthiest way to lasting success. NHS guidelines currently recommend at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity, plus strength exercises twice a week.  

Regular workouts will kill calories while preserving your lean muscle mass, boosting your metabolism, toning muscle and burning fat.

2. Improved mood

Do you need to de-stress after work? Lift your spirits during a low-time? A workout at the gym or run in the park can work wonders.

Physical activity releases a chemical called brain-derived neurotrophic factor which helps clear your mind, and endorphins promote the feeling of well-being, and even euphoria. But you don’t have to do long workouts. 20 – 30 minutes most days gains the best results.

3. Boosted energy levels

The last thing you feel like doing when you’re tired is exercise. But a workout is actually the best antidote to fatigue.

Research from the University of Georgia shows that engaging in regular, low intensity exercise increased energy levels in sedentary people by 20 percent. The theory is that exercise enhances blood flow and nutrients to muscle tissue, improving their ability to produce energy.

4. Tackles disease and chronic health conditions

People who exercise regularly have a lower risk of getting type 2 diabetes and a reduced risk of developing dementia.

Regular aerobic activity also decreases the risk of developing heart disease by  lowering blood pressure, increasing good HDL cholesterol, lowering bad LDL cholesterol and improving circulation.  

Recent research shows that exercising regularly also reduces the risk of developing cancer and well as stopping prostate cancer spreading.

5. Fun and social

Exercise carries emotional benefits as well as physical. Mixing with other people may be the first step to establishing new friendships and enhancing old ones. As exercise increases your self-esteem you may find yourself reaching out more to connect with other people, and supporting them too. Meeting someone at the gym, fitness classes or outdoor activities means you already know they enjoy keeping fit and healthy too.

Not sure what exercise to do? Rule number one - choose something you’ll enjoy. Rule two - mix it up so you don't get bored.

High energy Zumba, spin and bootcamp classes are all fun, and many people find interval training challenging and effective. Test out as many classes as you can, they all offer something a bit different and will all come with different benefits.

If you’re completely new to exercise try Couch to 5K, the nine-week running programme. Or if you fancy a change use a pay-as-you-go pass to try out a new gym session. 

You've heard it before, now hear it again: regular exercise has countless health benefits for mind and body. No excuses!

the author

Kath Webb

Kath is a contributing writer for Hussle. Football, running, weight training, yoga and walking are her forte, along with cooking tasty, nutritious food - with a regular batch of cake chucked in.