We all know that exercise is great for slimming down, but did you also know that you can make a few friends in the process?

It’s true. Exercise can get you more friends, which can be especially helpful if you’ve recently moved to a new city.

How exercise benefits your body and mind

Getting in shape is never easy, but the pros far outweigh the cons.

Here are the top four gains to be had from regular exercise.

1. Weight control

This may seem like an obvious one, but a lot of people tend to downplay exercise’s slimming effects. Basically, the more intense the exercise is, the more calories you’ll burn, which means you’ll lose more weight. If you can’t squeeze in an actual workout, then simply try to be more active throughout the day.

2. Improved mood

If you’re looking for an emotional lift, then try strolling around the park for half an hour. Physical activity actually stimulates various brain chemicals that can help you to feel happier and more relaxed. Plus, you’ll feel better about your appearance.

4. More energy

Regular exercise can not only improve your muscle strength and endurance, it can also make you feel more energetic. Exercise delivers oxygen and nutrients to your tissues, helping your cardiovascular system to work more efficiently.

Better sleep

If you’ve been having sleep issues, then regular exercise can help you fall asleep faster and deepen your sleep, too. There’s a caveat, though: just don’t exercise too close to bedtime or you might be too energized to fall asleep.

Get exercise, win friends

Here are five ways to work your way into new friendships as you work out.

1. Join a class at your local gym

This is probably the easiest way to make friends while you exercise. Gyms offer some 20 exercise classes to choose from. You’ll want to stick with whatever class you choose for at least a few months, and try showing up a few minutes earlier to mingle with other people.

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2. Walk your dog

If you’ve got a dog, then bring your dog to the nearest dog park, and mingle with other fellow dog owners. You can effortlessly organize a weekly dog walking event, and easily make some friends along the way!

3. Take up a sport like soccer or football

You’re sure to meet loads of people through any group sports activities. Look up your local community football or soccer chapter, and join in on a game or two!

4. Scope out a community pool

Swimming is a great way to make new friends, especially during the summer months. Buy a monthly pass at your local community pool, and swim on the weekends, when lots of people will also be basking in the sun.

5. Sign up for a martial arts class

This is not only a fun way to get in shape and learn self-defense, it’s also a great way to meet new people! A lot of martial arts classes are interactive, which means that you’re required to engage with others.

Get physical and grow popular

Making new friends through exercise is easy, as long as you engage in a social activity. The easiest way to do that is to either sign up for an exercise class or join some sort of club or sport.

You’re sure to make a few new friends as you get in shape. Plus, having a support system for your fitness plan means you’re more likely to stick with it.

References

  1. "5 Reasons Friends Can Make Exercise Better," U.S. News & World Report, March 1, 2016.
  2. "Group Exercise and Making New Friends," Career Girl Network, March 4, 2014.
  3. "Sharing Workout Results With Your Friends Pushes You to Exercise Even Harder," Science of Us, April 19, 2017.
  4. "Why Working Out Is a Great Way to Make Friends," PopSugar, October 3, 2016.

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