Here, in sha Allaah we will talk about why we should regularly do physical exercise. Why do we need to take physical activity? This is what we will talk about in sha Allaah.
Exercise Helps to Strengthen Faith in Allah (SWT)
Working out regularly, that means exercise is something that you can’t do away with. If you’re healthy, if you’re able physically, you should exercise. And if you can do this daily six days a week, that’s the ideal thing. If not, then three times a week or at least two times a week. This is something very important. Why would we talk about this? Why would we bring up something just like this? Because life is all interconnected. Thinks in our lives are all interconnected. Your relationship with Allah SWT is not separate from your lifestyle, not separate from your physical health. It’s not separate. Because if you don’t really look after your body, you won’t be able to worship Allah SWT as well as you would like to do. Being able physically is something you can achieve by looking after your body. Physical fitness will actually help you improve your relationship with Allah SWT if you are focused in that direction. Physical exercise just enables you to take your relationship with Allah SWT to the next level. It does, it did to many people. In this piece we are going to share some personal experience with you.
Benefits of Exercise
Physical exercise has so many benefits such as mental benefits, psychological benefits, social benefits and the list goes on. So many benefits that could help you in your daily affairs, in your worldly affairs and even in things that pertain to the life after death. Things that pertain to your relationship with Allah SWT. It helps you so much. In sha Allah we will talk about these some of the benefits that you can actually get from physical exercise.
Exercise Works as a Metaphor
The first thing that I would like to mention, one of the first benefits of physical exercise is that physical exercise is actually metaphor. And when you do it, when you exercise regularly, you bring this metaphor into your life. You give it life, you bring it to life then it becomes active in the way you view life, the way you view yourself, the way you look at yourself. By the way your self-image has a lot to do with your physical condition. So as you actually exercise, you are strengthening your body, you are more in control, and that could actually change or can increase the level of self-esteem, that can actually positively impact your self-image. Your self-image is central to everything you think and every think you do and every think you feel, it’s at the center of all of this. This is how we human beings function. Your self-image is the center of every activity, whether it’s conscious or unconscious. So when you exercise, you are actually impacting your self-esteem, self-image positively.
How Exercise is Really a Metaphor
It’s a metaphor because exercise is something that you can actually do. Something that you can do now, on the spot you can do some exercise. It’s not something that you have to plan to and make long term plans or mid-term plans or all that stuff. Not at all, it’s is something that you can do immediately. So if I decide to exercise now, I can exercise for half an hour. If I am not really fit, I can exercise for half an hour, if it’s mild kind of exercise or light kind of exercise. You can still exercise, you can still do it. So that’s the good of it. The fact that it’s immediate, it’s something you can do now. You can get it’s result even immediately as well, if you are good about yourself. You feel more in control. And that’s why I said exercise is a metaphor. It’s a metaphor, It serves you in other areas of your life, because it’s something you can do now. It gives you a sense of control, a sense of mastery and it gives you the pay off immediately and even in the long term.
Exercise Produces Immediate Outcome
When you do exercise you feel good about yourself, you develop the sense of mastery. This feeling of mastery, you’ve mastered your body, you’ve mastered yourself, you’ve achieve something now, you just can feel it. And this is why exercise actually satisfies one of the most basic needs that we have psychologically as humans. The need for mastery, the need for competence. We need to feel that we are competent, that we can master ourselves and our surroundings. So when you exercise, even if it’s a light exercise, it’s a not necessarily heavy exercise, still it gives you that feeling of mastery and competence and control. And this can make a huge difference in your life. Huge difference in how you view yourself. So this is why I said it’s a metaphor. You will use this metaphor, this exercise that gives you the sense of mastery and sense of competence. So it can actually make you or raise the level of your hope that you can actually achieve mastery and competence in other areas of your life that require more work probably on extended period. So this why it works as a metaphor. So exercise, physical exercise, physical work out is a powerful metaphor for your life. It just gives you a proof that I can do it that I can get results because you get it now, you get it immediately and that’s why it’s so powerful so that’s probably. To us this is the most important thing about physical exercise. It serves as a metaphor, it gives a strong message, it gives you a proof that you can actually do something and you can get the results. So you feel this sense of urgency that you have now immediately. This empowers you to embark on other things that you thought or probably you thought you were not able to do. It actually increases your sense of competence, your sense of mastery. So now you developed the hope and probably the expectations and may be the confidence that I can actually do other things as well. It changes your whole chemistry and this takes us to point number, benefit number two.
Exercise Generates Happiness hormones
Research has found that when you do physical exercise, when you exert yourself physically, when you do exercise, especially regularly your body produces chemicals that are called happiness hormones like dopamine, serotonine and others that kind of family of hormones that actually increase your sense of well-being, your happiness, your contentment and it just improves your mood in general. So when you do this, when you exercise regularly you maintain those levels to a very good level continuously, consistently you are there so this is another benefit. And this is why usually people when they do some physical exercise they fill fulfilled, they fill happy, they fill euphoric. You see this kind of euphoria is after you do some exercise. It’s chemical, it’s psychological and it’s mental. Because you feel good about yourself, you feel you are able, you feel you can do certain things. So this is why you can actually do some exercise. It could actually rise the level of your hopes because now you feel you can do something.
Exercise Boosts Competence Level
Research in positive psychology has found out that when the level of your happiness is up we tend to be more optimistic. Usually we tend to be more accurate to assess. When we assess our abilities and our competence and we tend to raise the bar when it comes to our goals. So we tend to start wanting to achieve something greater, something bigger, something more important, something that seems to be probably difficult, more challenging. So you expand your life, you expand your aspirations when you do physical exercise. Because it shifts your mood within this, it creates a new kind of chemistry balance within your body.
Exercise Improves Functioning of Body Organs
Physical exercise, as well, improves the functioning of all the organs within your body, your heart, your lever, your digestive system and your kidneys, everything, your brain, it boosts everything, it just improves everything in your body. Everything starts functioning at a better level and more balanced. So that’s just because you are keeping this kind of exercise.
Exercise Improves Sleep Pattern
This is as a result of the previous ones as well. When you do a physical exercise you will start to notice that your sleep pattern will improve so you will need fewer hours of sleep. I cut my sleeping hours by two when I started exercising about 20 months ago. Since I started exercising my sleeping hours started going down and down and down and down. I don’t feel I need more sleep because my body now rejuvenates itself, it recreates, it increases the regenerative process within the body, so it heals itself, it rebuilds itself without the need for so much sleep. Because obviously when you are exercising you are taking in more oxygen and it nourishes your whole body. So I stopped having difficulty waking up for fajr. Like when I wanted to do certain acts of worship probably at night, or teaching, when I am traveling, doing courses and all that.
Everything in your body starts working better and as a result, you will need less sleep, you will get lesser tires so you can help more people, you can do more good deeds. it’s just another quality of life. So why do away with it? Sometimes people say, usually, their excuse is I don’t have time for it. But, if you exercised for half an hour every day that’s going to give you, reduce your sleep and probably you will get two hours in return. So that’s a great investment.
Exercise Enhances Productivity
Exercise develops stamina. I didn’t get tired. If I wanted to wake up early, I could wake up early. In the past, it was a struggle. But now it became much easier than it used to be. And this actually frees your mind to do more things, to do other things of greater value. So why struggle physically and you know delay yourself hinder your progress. Actually by exercising you improve all of this. So look at there are so many benefits if we were to mention all the benefits of exercise. And this is the reason why I’m mentioning this. Why do, why as a Muslim, as a practicing Muslim we need to do more exercise.
As we said, it just serves as a metaphor and it empowers you, improves your self-image. It also improves your chemistry and increases your level of happiness and well-being. You are more likely to set greater goals, more inspirational goals for yourself. It raises the level of your aspirations and so that actually it expands your life and it makes you a better person. Aspire grater things and the third benefit, as we mentioned, is actually improving all the processes in your body.
Video: Physical exercises in Bangladesh
What it Takes to Begin Exercise
It might be difficult to get started because of procrastination. You will just keep saying ok tomorrow, next week, next week, next month when I’m done with this project or when I get married or when I work. You know, there is always an excuse but excuses are never good reasons. If you want to start and I recommend this, I highly recommend this, start exercising right away. At least start first with two times a week, half an hour each, with light exercises, probably walking or probably some jogging and then some push-ups and press-ups etcetera. Then keep increasing probably get it up to three times a week or four times a week or five times a week, half an hour each session, just half an hour. You can find online, there are so many websites and videos on youtube that really tell you about ideal exercises. If you want to burn more fat, if you want to strengthen your body, you will find online whatever you want, information is all over the online place, so you can find it.
What are The Motivations for Exercise
But what we lack is not the information it’s the motivation. Start now and if you can find a good partner then that’s great but if you can’t find make it yourself. I didn’t find a partner but I did it myself and I linked my physical fitness to my ultimate goal which is worshiping Allaah SWT and achieving what I want to achieve in this life for the sake of Allaah SWT. When I linked my physical exercise to this, I didn’t have to push myself to do it. Sometimes it would be the first thing in the morning when I wake up. I feel full of energy; I want to do my exercise because I feel. I do it with the intention that it’s going to strengthen my body, it will help me achieve the best results in this life and please Allaah SWT more, achieve more for the sake of Allaah SWT. So that’s why I do my exercise, I just do it because this energizes me, I don’t have to push myself, I don’t have to drag myself to go and do the exercise. Some people might find more empowered to do it in the gym or maybe it’s easier for them, they feel more motivated, there will be more encouragement, that’s good for you. Some other people might do it by themselves, actually, it might be better for them. Just like myself, that’s how I do it. If I go to the gym, I’m sure I’d give it up. But I motivated myself about it so you need to find out the best recipe for yourself. There is no one answer for all, just find out what it is. As long as you link your physical fitness to worshiping Allaah SWT, and achieving the goal that you want to achieve in life, you don’t have to push yourself to do it. And as I said it’s a powerful metaphor, because once you start exercising, just pay attention to this, you will find how much symbolism there is.
First, it gives you a sense of competence and accomplishment like, I can do things, I can be in control, and I’m achieving results now because when you are physically fit, you can notice that in everything in your life. Your sleeping pattern, your eating pattern, your energy level, and all that stuff. So you can get immediate results. And if you do it consistently, it can actually symbolize your ability to do things consistently until you get them done. So it’s so powerful as a metaphor, that can really change your self-image so profoundly, and take you from failure to success from procrastination to action and motivation.
So hopefully try to do this to the best of your ability, and really the payoff is so great the investment is worth it. The payoff you get is way, way beyond the time or the effort that you put into it. Our body was created to be active, not to overwhelm them with so much food and which is probably as well junk food and with laziness all the time that doesn’t work, that destroys your body. You need to take good care of it, it will save you and it will allow you to reach newer heights with your relationship with Allaah SWT and newer heights with your energy level new heights with the achievements of your goals and fulfillment in life. That was my personal experience and it’s still progressing and I hope Allaah SWT will help me push it even more and more.
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