General goodness for your body
People who work out everyday get crazy benefits—good for them. But what about that very first workout, or just one session? “Overall there are several physical and mental benefits related to any type of exercise,” says Murphy Grant, MS, ATC, PES, executive chair of the National Athletic Trainers’ Association, Intercollegiate Council for Sports Medicine (ICSM), and associate athletic director for sports medicine at the University of Kansas. “Depending on the type of workout you’re doing, there can be lots of beneficial changes, including improved cardiovascular efficiency, increased bone density, higher metabolic efficiency, increased lean muscle mass and of course decreased body fat.” And most people would be surprised to know how much of that good stuff can start in just one exercise session, Grant adds.
Better body image
Having a positive feeling about your body leads to all kinds of good things—check out what these plus-size models have to say about their body confidence. Just one exercise session can have a positive impact on the way a woman sees herself, according to new 2017 research published in Psychology of Sport and Exercise. “Women, in general, have a tendency to feel negatively about their bodies,” study senior author Kathleen Martin Ginis, professor in University of British Columbia, Okanagan’s School of Health and Exercise Sciences, told ScienceDaily. “This is a concern because poor body image can have harmful implications for a woman’s psychological and physical health including increased risk for low self-esteem, depression, and for eating disorders.” In her study, Martin Ginis compared the self-perceptions of a group of women who had completed 30 minutes of aerobic exercise with a group who had instead sat and read. The study found those who had exercised had “significant improvements in their body image” over those who hadn’t exercised. This effect was linked to the women in the exercise group perceiving themselves as being stronger and thinner. “We all have those days when we don’t feel great about our bodies,” Martin Ginis said, according to ScienceDaily. “This study and our previous research shows one way to feel better, is to get going and exercise. The effects can be immediate.”