Ah yes, physical exercise. You know that process wherein you harm yourself through activity to strengthen or maintain your fitness level?
When we get right down to it, fitness means being able to perform physical activity. But that’s not all of it. Now I know you know that I know that you want to know what else it also means, so let’s be honest with ourselves for once – having that energy and strength to feel as good as possible doing what you want to do is crucial. Gaining in fitness, even a little bit, is good for your overall health after all. It’s important when you decide to lift that 5 x 6 strainer, it’s important when you decide to hit the high notes, and it’s sure as shit important when you decide to perform that headspin or barrel roll.
I know what you’re thinking my friends.
It’s probably very strange to come to a website which proclaims it focuses on the arts, and which also admits that it sometimes dabbles in philosophy, sociology, marketing, and even psychology because of course theories are not unique to the arts. This I know. But writing about exercise? What does exercise have to do with anything timotheories? But I promise you that what I’m heading towards is important.
I’m going to share a quote from a Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Arnold: The Education of A Bodybuilder. Mostly because I want to make a point, but also because I intend to read the book and this is a good reminder that I should share it with you in the near future.
It was the summer I turned fifteen, a magical season for me because that year I’d discovered exactly what I wanted to do with my life. It was more than a young boy’s mere pipe dream of a distant, hazy future – confused fantasies of being a fireman, detective, sailor, test pilot, or spy. I knew I was going to be a bodybuilder. It wasn’t simply that either. I would be the best bodybuilder in the world, the greatest, the best-built man.
He later admits that family, friends, and strangers all thought he was crazy. It wasn’t a popular sport at the time, but he burned with purpose and passion for life. It was an exhilarating experience for him every time he did it. He did it despite all of the criticism. This is how you should feel whenever you are making anything creative. Do it for you and no one else, that is your day to day motivation. We’ve gone down this path before friends.
Now when you think of your higher purpose, you should make work that is meaningful and important, and people will begin to reach out to you.
But it’s not that simple, after all.
Your motivation is fickle, your mind is weak. It cannot handle stress and pressure without proper support. No matter how much strength of will you think you have, taking care of your physical self is key to maintenance.
You see dear readers, exercise affects your body in so many different ways than just strength and energy. It also forces your lungs to work faster and increase your maximum capacity of oxygen. Your heart becomes more efficient at supplying properly oxygenated blood to you, and your resting heart rate improves too – Not to mention your decreased blood pressure. And osteoporosis is a real problem as we age, but when we exercise with weights we can better maintain healthy bone mass. Last, but most definitely not least, your brain health is directly related to exercise.
Our brains release a protein called BDNF (Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor) when under stress, and exercise stresses our brains. After the exercise is complete BDNF provides repair and protection to our neurons and calms us down.
AND our brains release endorphins when we exercise. So we get post-workout euphoria and reduced physical pain and discomfort while exercising.
BDNF and endorphins are triggered by regular exercise which will help with your mood and better your cognitive abilities. That’s why you need to exercise routinely. Exercise allows you to be the best version of yourself, for yourself, so that you can lift those canvases and drop those beats. It’s essential.
But you know what, that’s just a theory.