How Exercise Makes you Smarter and a Better Student

How Exercise Makes you Smarter and a Better Student


Everyone knows they should exercise to be
healthy, but it’s also gonna make you a better student. Stay tuned to find out how. What’s going on guys! This is Jay from MedSchoolInsiders.com. We all know that exercise is important and
something we should incorporate regularly into our lives because of the multitude of
benefits. From cardiovascular health to bone health,
decreasing the risk of diabetes etc., there are a great number of health benefits. But using health benefits as a motivator is
unfortunately not a very compelling reason to go to the gym. It has been shown that short term benefits,
such as feeling better during or immediately after a workout, are a stronger incentive
to get people working out. Additionally, challenging yourself in a physical
manner through regular exercise makes you a better person all around and carries through
all aspects of your life, including your studies. Here is the key point: exercise forces you
to learn to be comfortable with being uncomfortable. I love that because it’s so powerful. This applies to any sport or athletic or athletic
endeavor that requires regular training. As many top athletes have said, suffering
in competitive athletics is inevitable, but being able to embrace uncomfortable situations
is paramount to success, and not just in exercise, but in other aspects of your life. Public speaking used to be one of my biggest
fears and I absolutely hated it any time that I had to go up and speak in front of an audience. But by learning to be comfortable with being
uncomfortable and by getting outside of my comfort zone, I was able to address this weakness
and even learned to actually enjoy public speaking. Another example: I have learned that when
I feel the burn during exercise or pain or discomfort, instead of running away from it
and trying to escape it, I practice mindfulness. I look at it curiously, almost from a third-person
perspective intrigued by what I’m feeling rather than letting it control my thoughts. You can see this happen in action by doing
something as simple as planks. So I’m gonna challenge you to try doing a
regular plank and time yourself. Now, do it again but this time don’t let the
burn consume you and instead watch it curiously, almost from a third person perspective. See how much longer you can go. So how does this help you as a student? Research shows that regular aerobic exercise
enhances cognitive functions particularly executive functions. Here’s the study from the International Journal
of Sports Medicine, link to the article is in the description below. Another study published in 2006 in the Journal
of health psychology showed that participants who went from not exercising at all to even
a modest program of two or three visits per week demonstrated decreased stress, smoking,
alcohol and caffeine consumption. Their spending and study habits improved and
were overall able to improve their regulatory habits; meaning, their ability to carry forward
even when their body and mind is begging them to stop. Enhance their ability to stay calm in the
face of difficulties. This is closely tied to discipline which you
guys already know I’m a huge proponent of. Discipline and self regulatory behavior allows
you to achieve something that you set up to do at a prior moment in time, even when you
don’t want to do it at a later time. And like I’ve said before, discipline is a
muscle requiring regular exercise. If you practice discipline and going to the
gym regularly and eating healthier, you’ll find it much easier to follow a discipline
study routine. That alone will make a significant difference
in your grades. Now, Charles Duhigg in the Power of Habit
which I have recommended multiple times in this channel, again link in the description
below, calls exercise a keystone habit. Meaning, this change in one area of your life
can bring about positive changes in many other areas. These Keystone habits are powerful because
they change our sense of self and our sense of what is possible. As many of you have probably heard, you are
the some of your habits. Most of what we do day in and day out are
simply repeated behaviors that are habits. Changing your habits is therefore one of the
most powerful ways to change or improve yourself. Now, the takeaway from these studies is that
you don’t have to exercise at a professional or Olympic level of intensity. As long as you’re challenging yourself, you’re
gonna reap a multitude of benefits. Like I said in the video explaining in my
own journey to medical school, challenging yourself is a vital part in the process of
growth and improvement. Challenging your muscles and body with increased
exercise intensity and demand also provides the stimulus for muscular growth and strengthening. Similarly, challenging yourself in other areas
of your life and getting outside of your comfort zone will help you grow in multiple different
ways. If you’re finding it difficult to start a
regular exercise routine, consider the following: although it may seem counterintuitive, studies
have shown that people whose goals are weight loss and better health spend the least amount
of time exercising. In this study of 335 men and women between
ages 60 to 95, immediate rewards that enhanced daily life such as revitalized energy, improved
mood and decreased stress actually offered significantly more motivation. Leave a comment below on what your chosen
method of exercise is. Personally, I love cycling and weight training
but I also occasionally go running or hiking. If you don’t regularly exercise right now,
how are you going to incorporate exercise into your life moving forward? As always, thank you guys for watching. If you liked the video, make sure you press
that like button. New videos every week, so hit subscribe if
you haven’t already and I will see you guys in that next one!