If You Don’t Get in Shape Now, Here’s What Your Friends and Family Can Expect Out of You Later

Everyone is fully aware of the physical benefits of exercise for your physical health. Exercise can reduce your risk of heart attack, it can increase your flexibility, your energy levels go up, and so much more. Now, scientists and researchers are finding new areas in which a moderate increase in physical activity can make your life better. It will also improve the way your friends and family see you.

The long-lasting effects of physical activity are astonishing

Man doing sit-ups with an exercise ball

Getting in shape is more important than you ever thought. | OJO Images/Getty Images

Researchers at the Université de Montpellier took three studies that included over 8,500 participants and spanned two decades. Participants in the studies were examined for their personalities and levels of physical activity. The participants at the beginning of two of the studies were, on average, 53 years old. The other study had participants that were 46 years old on average.

The researchers were able to determine that a sedentary life will make you worse mentally. Researchers suggest that even the slightest increase in physical activity will accumulate over time and have a massive impact on your personality later in life. Once your personality starts to degrade, it will affect so many different areas of your life.

Next: Here are a few of the areas that will be devastated by your physical inactivity.

You won’t be as conscientious as you are now

business man reading on his mobile phone

Could your kindness slip? | iStock.com/imtmphoto

Being conscientious is extremely important to any relationship. Whether it be a spouse, relative, or friend, that relationship can be harmed by your declining personality. That’s what happens when you start to slow down and not care about others.

Next: You may end up alone.

You may become more of a hermit

Man sitting on sofa reading newspaper

Staying at home is not always a positive thing. | Paul Bradbury/Getty Images

When your physical inactivity sends you down a negative personality trajectory, it becomes easier to stop maintaining relationships. Relationships take a lot of work. If you really want to kill two birds with one stone, pick up a hobby to do with friends that involves some physical activity. Golf is a perfect recommendation, but it is entirely up to you.

Next: The next problem usually comes with being a hermit.

You may become more of a curmudgeon

curmudgeon old woman

You may nag people more than you used to. | TatyanaGl/iStock/Getty Images

Exercise is known for its mood-enhancing effects on people. When you are in a positive mood, you are far more agreeable than you would be otherwise. This decline in agreeability will likely lead to you being a pessimist of everyone’s ideas, opinions, and general views.

Next: The thing most Americans complain about may get worse.

You will be more stressed

Mature Man looking sad

Stress will hit hard. | Highwaystarz-Photography/Getty Images

If you think you’re stressed out now, think of how stressed out you’ll be when you can’t get up from the crapper. Well, if you’re not exercising at least a little bit, as you get older it becomes harder to do simple things. That would easily stress any proud person out. On top of that, your fuse gets shorter and other things in life can stress you out that didn’t before.

Next:  If you think you’re on top of things now, don’t expect to be later on.

Your self-discipline may slip

Tired overworked freelancer working with a laptop

Do you feel uninspired and unmotivated. | iStock.com/AntonioGuillem

One of the things that the study cites as a downfall to not having any physical activity is that people begin to lose self-discipline. When you have this maladaptive personality deterioration, the ability to maintain personal goals begins to slip. It’s a compounding effect from all the other personality detriments we’ve listed before.

Next: Life is an adventure, and you could lose the drive to pursue that adventure.

You may be less curious and adventurous

bored couple

Do you find yourself doing the same things over and over? | Ridofranz/iStock/Getty Images

It would seem that staying sedentary also shuts you in mentally. Most of the people living inactive lifestyles were ever curious about things and less willing to do an adventurous activity. Given the fact that people in this study were in their retirement years, it seems sad that you work all your life to just close your self in. If you’re not going to become more active for your healths sake, at least do it for your retirements sake.

Next: Here’s what you can do to prevent this from happening. 

Pick up an active hobby

Mature couple walking

Get out and get moving! | Image Source/Getty Images

The researchers pointed out that you can have a profound impact on your personality later in life with a minimal increase in physical activity. the reason is that it compounds over time. So you can do something as little as going for walks a few times a week with your friends or your spouse. Get a dog to help motivate you to go to the park. Anything that gets you off the couch and moving will suffice.

Next: Or you can go the other rout and win bigger.

Get into a serious physical activity

Rock Climbing

Finding a new hobby may be the best bet. | Monika Skolimowska/AFP/Getty Images

Like the study suggests, the personality benefits compound over time. So think of it as contributing to your 401k; the more you contribute, the more you gain. There are plenty of middle-senior aged people mountain biking, rock climbing, skiing, weightlifting, and paragliding. There’s no reason you shouldn’t be able to do the same. You are the one who has to make the effort.


Check out The Cheat Sheet on Facebook!