9 Reasons to Work Out That Have Nothing to Do with Getting Skinny

9 Reasons to Work Out That Have Nothing to Do with Getting Skinny

1. To become a badass

You’re not too old, too out of shape, or too busy to start moving your body more. With every session, you’re becoming better, faster, and stronger than the old you. Added bonus: you’ll get to shock and/or piss off everyone who didn’t believe in you.

2. Because sore feels better than sluggish

You know that stiff, icky feeling you get when you’ve been sitting for too long? Imagine feeling like that all the time. The best way to prevent that nightmare scenario is to keep moving throughout the day. Making physical activity an integral part of your life will keep you feeling spry—especially if stretching and flexibility are a priority. Any temporary pain and soreness from your workout pales in comparison to the gross feeling of a sedentary life.

3. To prevent injuries

Strengthening your muscles, joints, and ligaments—combined with developing your flexibility—will make you less likely to get hurt. Ongoing physical activity will also strengthen your proprioception (your sense of your body and the space it’s occupying), so you’ll be more capable of maintaining your balance and stability. This decreases your risk of injury both in and out of the gym.

4. To get to know your body and its limits

And to give the finger to those limits as you leave them behind.

5. So you won’t feel guilty eating what you want

No one wants to go through life eating only kale and quinoa. Good, intense workouts not only burn calories, they also boost your resting metabolic rate. Especially if you’re working out hard, your body needs you to eat solid, complete meals, not just rabbit food. And you can feel okay about having treats when you want them, too.

6. To build mental toughness

Overcoming the challenges you’re going to face in your workout practice is an awesome way to develop your grit. Every time your brain tells you, “I can’t do that,” you have an opportunity to prove it wrong. Every time you really don’t feel like dragging your ass to the gym or track or studio, you get the chance to dig deep and show up anyway. And every time you make that choice, your mental toughness muscles grow.

7. To make everyday life easier

Hustling to catch the train, lifting the dog into the bathtub, and dashing up the stairs get so much easier if you’re working out regularly. Even if your daily life is fairly sedentary, you’ll still notice the benefit from increased strength, speed, and endurance.

8. To build your confidence

Being able to do something you weren’t able to do before is a huge confidence booster. When you’re achieving personal records and crushing your goals, fitness becomes more about what your body can do than what it looks like. And there is nothing better for the ol’ self-esteem than being unequivocally capable of doing rad shit.

9. So if you meet a Nazi, you can kick his ass

Get strong enough to beat him, and get fast enough to run if his Nazi buddies are around.

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Hannah Alvarez

Semi-okay at athletics and life. Very good at overcoming mental challenges. Working on getting 1% better every day. Roller derby skater since 2017. Crossfit athlete since 2019.