WHY should I EXERCISE?
DO IT FOR THE HEALTH BENEFITS
Physical activity improves heart function and lipid profile by lowering total cholesterol.
It lowers blood pressure and resting heart rate.
Being active reduces the risk and severity of diabetes by increasing insulin sensitivity.
Exercise improves strength, balance, endurance and long-term brain health.
DO IT TO HAVE FUN AND ENJOY LIFE!
Exercise can be a fun and social activity. It can also be a way to reclaim some control over your life. Feeling the joy of renewed (or new!) physical strength is empowering and liberating. Increased strength and endurance translates into improved ability to easily preform the activities of daily living, leaving more time to enjoy life.
DO IT FOR YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS
Having a stroke is traumatic for the survivor as well as for their family and friends. For stroke survivors, the benefits of exercise can spell the difference between dependence and independence. Exercise can mean a healthier, happier life at a lower economic cost than the disabled, isolated and depressed alternative.
Caregivers need exercise, too!
CHALLENGE yourself –
CELEBRATE your successes!
TIPS FOR SUCCESS
Start where you are.
Set reasonable goals based on your current condition.
Don't try to move too quickly - build up your endurance over time. Pain does NOT equal progress!
Track your progress.
Chart your progress so you can't miss the improvements.
Seeing incremental changes is very motivating!
Share your successes!
Tell everyone about your accomplishments.
You can expect some discomfort and muscle soreness as you begin a new active regimen. Don't let this discourage you!
The benefits of exercise are cumulative. Increase your challenges, duration and frequency and your enjoyment will increase, too!