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The Art of Exercising: An insight on the craft of all types of exercise.

I never used to exercise. Personally, I preferred reading a book, doing a craft or watching television. Why would I want to physically exert energy when I could just lay in bed all day?

This was my mindset until I wanted to make my high school field hockey team. I wanted to be on the team more than anything… but where to begin?

My dad is a runner and worked with me. He taught me how to pace, breathe and move my arms
in a way that would improve my performance. I remember taking runs together and feeling like I was dying. I couldn’t breathe. My legs hurt. I wanted to stop, but I wanted to make the team even more.

When the word “art” is presented before me, exercise isn’t one of the first words that comes to
mind. However, as I explored this topic, I realized that exercise is just as much of an art form as music
and painting. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines art as a “skill acquired by experience, study,
or observation.”

So let’s break this down. Exercise comes in many forms which range from cardiovascular,
to balance, to flexibility, to strength. Each form takes a certain amount of training, dedication and
trial-and-error in order to master.

It took me weeks to see improvement in my cardiovascular health as I began training. Slowly, I found myself increasing my pace and enjoying the fresh air. After dedication and training, I eventually ran my first 5k and then my first half marathon. Who knew getting in shape for field hockey would lead me to fall in love with the sport of running?

Exercise is far from easy. It requires a sort of mental toughness that is unparalleled. But it also reaps so many rewards, especially in the realm of mental health. According to Walden University, “exercise is a scientifically proven mood booster, decreasing symptoms of both depression and anxiety.”

According to a study by Science Today, it is also important to keep in mind that “more exercise [is] not always better, and the study found that exercising for 45 minutes three to five times a week was associated with the biggest benefits.” Lifting weights, dancing, running, and everything else in between demonstrate exercise as an art form. If you’re looking to start exercising, or
just to switch up your normal routine, be warned, it may take time; however, when time, commitment,
and dedication are put together, the benefits are unparalleled.

Sources: Walden University, Science Today

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