In life, you have two choices: you can either throw in the towel or use it to wipe the sweat off your brow.

Exercise is a big deal to me, and has helped me in so many ways, I can’t count them anymore. It and the CCO (Canadian Cadet Organization) probably saved my life, and has also done wonders for my (relative) success in the world of Human Resources. I’ve dealt with eating disorders, depression and anxiety a lot over the last 10 years, and have gone to some pretty dark places. It’s something serves as my own personal reminder that I can and will do everything that I put my mind to, because I have overcome so much that I thought I never previously would.

How can it help you with your business or within the rest of the working world? As you read this, reflect on how any exercise or healthy lifestyle has had a positive impact and I invite you to share in the comment section below!

It can boost your creativity.

Working out boosts your brain power! This is thanks to an increase in blood flow to your brain (a.k.a. booster juices), which helps you to be able increase your idea-generating and decision-making abilities.

Exercise helps relieve stress.

It can give you time to do something that you enjoy. To neglect to do something that lights up your soul in favour of doing that extra bit of work or that task for someone else will do damage. Having too much on your plate for too long and doing what helps others over what helps you leads to burnout, a loss of ambition, and can lead to depression. Be sure to stick to the routine, as missing one may throw your week off (the exception lies in if you are sick or injured).

You’ll be a better leader.

Exercise is a big leadership booster because of something entrepreneurs and leaders are notorious bragging about their lack of- sleep! Are you really more productive in hour 13 than you were in hour 12? Those who get more and better sleep are known to be able to think faster, make more sound decisions, and have so much more energy to allow you to be sharp and motivated to conquer your goals.

You’ll have a better immune system.

One thing I’ve noticed is that when I exercise consistently, I get sick less frequently. It’s probably got a lot to do with the fact that your stress levels tend to decrease when you exercise more, which lowers your cortisol levels.

It provides a boost to your memory.

In even as few as 20 minutes of interval training a few times a week for as low as 6 weeks, people have found to be able remember more finite details, such as the conversations you had at a networking event a few weeks ago.

You’ll be able to focus more.

Being able to give someone or something your undivided attention will set you apart from the competition. How does exercise aid in this? When you’re at the gym or wherever you exercise, think about how often you just focus on the movement itself and not what else is going on around you. Try to channel that into your work ethic. It’ll set you apart.

It aids in your executive presence.

Exercise really does provide a boost to your confidence. It helps you to be able to better manage your anxiety and how you perceive yourself. It definitely impacts the message that you send out into the world, especially if you hold yourself as a confident person. People notice that, trust me.

You’ll notice a better work/life balance.

If you read that sentence and said “what’s that?”, you don’t have a work/life balance and that is dangerous. You need to schedule in time for yourself and loved ones that is not work-related. By putting it into the calendar, it is a visual commitment to yourself that you are a priority.

It gives you a unique networking opportunity.

Use caution with this one, as you need to do it properly. A lot of people when they are at the gym, out for a run, or at a team sport are using it as a way to get away from work and unwind themselves. Don’t be there to network, be there to workout but have your pitch ready when “what do you do?” inevitably comes up. The challenges that come with exercise shows a lot about someone’s personality and provides a unique topic of discussion that may allow you to see different sides of a person than a networking event.

It helps you overcome challenges.

This is a big one, as it allows you to hone in on the importance of setting goals for yourself and business. It also helps you gain some grit by overcoming challenges that you previously thought that you could not.

How has exercise impacted your life?