Exercise is the Trigger for Growth



“Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.” — Jim Rohn

Your physical intelligence has a profound effect on what you’re capable of achieving.

Your body is growing or dying.

The good news is that you can directly trigger the growth.  You trigger growth through exercise.

Your body is constantly balancing growth and decay, and it’s constantly looking for signals to determine growth and repair.  You can use exercise to signal growth to your body.

In the book Younger Next Year: Live Strong, Fit, and Sexy – Until You’re 80 and Beyond, Chris Crowley and Henry Lodge explain our new understanding of the biology of growth.

You Rebuild Your Body on a Daily Basis

You are constantly rebuilding the most machine of you.  Your body is a perpetual work in progress.

Via Younger Next Year: Live Strong, Fit, and Sexy – Until You’re 80 and Beyond:

“First off, you may think of your body as a ‘thing,’ like the Empire State Building or a car, but it’s not.  It’s made of meat, sinew and fat and many other parts that break down over time and have to be constantly renewed.  The muscle cells in your thigh are completely replaced, one at a time, day and night, abut every four monthsBrand-new muscles, three times a year.  The solid leg you’ve stood on so securely since childhood is mostly new since last summer.  Your blood cells are replaced every three months, your platelets every ten days, your bones every couple of years.  Your taste buds are replaced every day.

This is not a passive process.  You don’t wait for a part to wear out or break.  You destroy it at the end of tis planned life span and replace it with a new one.”

Your Body Actively Destroys Itself

Immortal cells are not a great idea.  Instead, your body says, “Out with the old, and in with the new.”

Via Younger Next Year: Live Strong, Fit, and Sexy – Until You’re 80 and Beyond:

“Stop for a moment, because that’s a whole new concept.  Biologists now believe that most cells in your body are designed to fall apart after relatively short life spans, partly to let you adapt to new circumstances and partly because older cells tend to get cancer, making immortal cells not such a great idea.  The net result is that you are actively destroying large parts of your body all the time.  On purpose!  Throwing out truckloads of perfectly good body to make room for new growth.  Your spleen’s major job is to destroy your blood cells.  You have armies of special cells whose only job is to dissolve your bones so other cells can build them up again, like pruning in autumn to make room for growth in the spring.”

The Trick is to Grow More Than You Throw Out

It’s a balancing act between growth and decay and you goodness is when your body grows more than it throws out.

Via Younger Next Year: Live Strong, Fit, and Sexy – Until You’re 80 and Beyond:

“The trick, of course, is to grow more than you throw out, and this is where exercise comes in.  It turns out that your muscles control the chemistry of growth throughout your whole body.  The nerve impulse to contract a muscle also sends a tiny signal to build it up, creating a moment-to-moment chemical balance between growth and decay within the muscle.  Those two same signals are then sent to the rest of your body.  If enough of the growth signals are sent at once, they overwhelm the signals to atrophy, and your body turns on the machinery to build up the muscles, heart, capillaries, tendons, bones, joints, coordination, and so on.”

Exercise is the Master Signaler for Growth

Exercise is how you renew, regenerate, and revitalize your body.

Via Younger Next Year: Live Strong, Fit, and Sexy – Until You’re 80 and Beyond:

“So exercise is the master signaler, the agent that sends hundreds of chemical cascades in motion each time you get on that treadmill and start to sweat.  It’s what sets off the cycles of strengthening and repair within the muscles and joints.  It’s the foundation of positive brain chemistry.  And it leads directly to the younger life we are promising, with its heightened immune system; it’s better sleep; it’s weight-loss, insulin regulation and fat burning; it’s improved sexuality; its dramatic resistance to heart attack, stroke, hypertension, Alzheimer’s disease, arthritis, diabetes, high cholesterol and depression.  All that comes from exercise.  But let your muscles sit idle and decay takes over again.”

To make the most of your body and to maximize what you’re capable of, you need to trigger more growth.

You already hold the keys.

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Image by Gregor.