7 Science-Backed Reasons to Exercise That Have Zero to Do With Weight Loss

From better skin to better sex to better sleep, there are plenty of reasons to get outside sweating today.



Sometimes, you need motivation aside from the promise of fitting into your skinny jeans to get your off your couch, outside of your pleasantly air-conditioned apartment, and exercising. If you’ve been at a loss to find any reasons (we’ve all been there), not to worry: We’ve got plenty for you.

We’ve rounded seven science-backed reasons to get off the couch and get moving—none of which have to do with weight loss—from the oh-so-wonderful runner’s high to the promise of a better night’s rest to improved skin to better sex and more. Read up, then get moving! 

1. Exercise ups your chances of living longer.
Via The New York Times

I mean, it would seem this reason would be enough to get you moving, but we will continue on with our list anyway.

2. Exercise is the ultimate mood-booster.

Our brains release endorphins (think: think magical, all-natural pain relievers and mood elevators) when we get our sweat on. Meaning: That post-workout bliss is real, people — and it can turn any bad day around.

3. Working out improves your sleep quality.
Via Sleep Foundation

Raise your hand if you feel like a zombie most days due to lack of sleep. If your hand is raised high, then it’s probably time to up your workout routine: Research shows that getting in 150 minutes of vigorous activity per week can improve your sleep quality by over 65 percent.

4. Exercise makes your brain “more plastic.” Yes, that’s a good thing.
Via Medical Daily

Research has shown that just 30 minutes of exercise can increase plasticity in the brain. Why is this a good thing? Plasticity is related to memory, making it important for learning. In other words, increasing plasticity is key to becoming the smartest you you can be.

5. Exercising is good for your sex life.
Via BuzzFeed

We probably should’ve led with this one, huh? Exercise ups your sex life in a slew of ways, ranging from helping in the arousal department to increasing stamina and more. You are welcome.

6. It’s good for your skin.
Via WebMD

Long story short: Exercise increases blood flow. Blood flow helps to carry away waste products, including skin-damaging free radicals. So, as dermatologist Ellen Marmur tells WebMD, you can think of working out as “cleansing your skin from the inside.”

7. Running can relieve annoying allergy symptoms.
Via Men’s Health

I’ve been dealing with seasonal allergies pretty much my entire life, and it’s not pretty (or pleasant). I get it all: itchy, puffy eyes, stuffy nose, scratchy throat, sneezing. But studies have shown that allergy symptoms like congestion and sneezing can be reduced by up to 70 percent after just a half hour of running. Cue me looking for my running shoes.

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