Well-Being//

How Movement and Exercise Can Help Ignite Your Creativity

Research shows that staying active can boost your focus and imagination.

FocusStocker / Shutterstock
FocusStocker / Shutterstock

Those who think they have not time for bodily exercise will sooner or later have to find time for illness.

—Edward Stanley

You’ve heard it said a million times. By now you might be sick of hearing it. Physical exercise is a powerful remedy for stress relief, clear-mindedness, and productivity. So it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know how important it is for us writers after long stretches of sitting.

Raise your hand if the first thing you reach for after a long writing jag is a glass of wine, chocolate, or a cigarette. I thought so. Then you probably wiggle your body deeper into the sofa, thinking, “The last thing I want to do is exercise.” Right?

But would you put on your sweats if I told you that scientists have found the fountain of youth—that exercise could add ten years to your life? Regular exercise, they say, changes the molecular and cellular building blocks and slows aging cells. One year of exercise gives a seventy-year-old writer the brain connectivity of a thirty-year-old scribe, improving memory and the ability to plan, deal with ambiguity, and multitask.

So which is it: Plopping into your La-Z-Boy or hopping on the treadmill? If you’ve been looking for the fountain of youth, you won’t find it in a chill pill or cosmetic surgery. It’s contained in your Stairmaster, swimsuit, or dancing shoes.

Today’s Takeaway

Make exercise the first medicine you reach for before or after long writing hours, go to the gym, or take a walk for your happy hour.

Excerpt from Daily Writing Resilience by Bryan E. Robinson, PhD, with permission from the author and publisher.

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