We take risk very seriously. We don’t want you to take too much risk…or too little with your investments. Doing either can torpedo even the most carefully crafted plan.
There’s a hidden risk that’s even more insidious. It can destroy you and your family.
What’s that risk?
The awesome power of exercise
It’s the risk inherent in leading a sedentary life.
Here’s a stunning observation from Brain Rules, by John Medina: One of the greatest predictors of successful aging is whether or not you live a sedentary lifestyle.
Read that sentence again. Its implications are profound.
The difference between spending your days wheelchair bound in a nursing home and thriving physically and mentally as you age, is directly related to exercise.
Seniors who exercised outperformed coach potatoes in cognitive tests measuring long-term memory, reasoning, attention, problem-solving skill and “fluid intelligence tasks” (which test the ability to reason quickly and improvise).
Benefits of exercise
Here are the benefits of exercise, as reported by Medina:
- A 20-minute walk each day cuts your risk of stroke by 57%.
- Exercise has been shown to be “astonishingly successful” in treating depression and anxiety.
- Aerobic exercise just twice a week halves your risk of general dementia. It cuts your risk of Alzheimer’s by 60%.
- Exercise decreases your risk for heart disease and diabetes.
Not much exercise is required
Don’t be deterred from exercising because you believe only very strenuous exercise is beneficial.
These findings from Medina may surprise you:
- Just walking several times a week benefits the brain;
- Moderate exercise is better than no movement at all;
- The “gold standard” is aerobic exercise for 30 minutes, two to three times a week; and
- Adding weight training provides even more cognitive benefit.
If you’re new to exercise, start small. Take a 10-20 minute walk every day.
The potentially catastrophic risk of leading a sedentary life is well within your control (unlike the direction of the stock market!).