The Unexpected Benefits of Fitness

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Exercise made me taller

Exercise made me taller.

Well not really, but it helped me reach higher, and isn’t that almost as good?

I’m 5’2”. It’s only a few inches below the female average, but short enough that if I’m standing in a kitchen, there’s a very good chance I can’t reach the top shelves. But the other day, up on my tippy toes, I was reaching for a top-shelf dish when I suddenly realized I could actually grab it.

No step-stool. No chair. No counter-climbing.

I know I’m not actually taller, but I do know I’m stronger.

Many trainers in the fitness industry promote the idea that regular exercise will help you to feel better. It’s a great message to give! For one thing, many clients do come to the gym with that goal in mind. Plus, there’s plenty of research available—and always more coming—to back it up. Exercise releases chemicals in the brain that help to increase happiness, reduce stress and improve sleep, to name only three benefits. So, stick to an exercise routine and those are some of the great benefits you can expect—and look forward to—but there’s more.

There’s my ability to reach higher, thanks to strengthening my core and building my balance at the barre. I’m certain a whole lot of barre calf raises haven’t hurt either! Or feeling comfortable holding my guitar because of strong posture muscles: I’m looking at you, TRX Y fly. These benefits take some time—building strength doesn’t happen overnight—but as you notice them, it’s a fantastic feeling.

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