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The Evolution Of “Exercise”

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For ages, people have participated in physical fitness. Back in the day, before cars and machines were created, humans had no choice but to exercise daily. Survival meant gathering food for the family, traveling long distances by foot, and working on a farm (which involved a lot physical labor).

Later, we see that ancient societies participated in physical fitness to defeat the land they were trying to conquer. The strong and mighty men were the men to win battles, not the weak. If battles weren’t won, men died and their families suffered. (This is another example of exercise as a means of survival). During the industrial revolution and eras afterward, there were many machines created which allowed work to be more time efficient and less difficult for humans. Therefore, exercise was no longer required to complete the same tasks. People were not engaging in exercise through their jobs, so exercise required a force within. In the twentieth century personal fitness equipment was made for adults to exercise outside of work in their free time. Personal fitness equipment included: fitness machines and free weights. Gyms started opening up all over the country for people to exercise at. Today, our society is more educated and knowledgeable than ever before, and those who physically work harder tend to make less money than those who have desk jobs.

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For example, a housekeeper or nursing assistant (which require heavy lifting and tons of walking) are paid less than an engineer or a lawyer. Lower paying jobs which require more work are not as elite, as jobs that require more education. Exercising is not how we survive in our world today. People’s lives don’t depend on gathering their own food or winning battles. However, I would argue that exercise is just as important as it was back in the day because it leads to a more abundant and full life. Exercise is proven to improve mood, increase energy and help the body function better. Now a days, things are simpler for humans than ever before. Transportation is easy to access, food is readily available anywhere you go and jobs are less calorie expending. Exercising is a choice, and it’s typically a harder option to make than watching “Netflix and chilling”. When we’ve had a long, tiring day at work it’s easy to go home and not make the decision to burn calories or lift weights for “fun”. But what if we could alter our mindset? It would make all the difference.

The body and mind are connected, and the parts must always be on board with one another. If the body isn’t willing (perhaps it’s tired), the mind needs to step in and activate the body to move. If the mind is full of stressful thoughts and exhausted with demands from life, the body needs to step up and move around. This way, the mind is forced to activate and get in the groove of exercising. In order to live a healthy mental, physical, and social well-being, exercise is vital for a long and rewarding life.


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