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3 Surprising Reasons to Love Exercise

Jessica Lucia/Flickr.

We all know that exercise is good for our hearts. It’ll help us live longer, it helps us sleep, and it keeps us trim. But is there more to exercise than just the obvious?

Studies say yes. Read on for three benefits of exercise that may surprise you!

1) Exercise treats ADHD. Sure, you know that exercise helps you focus… but did you know that the mental acuity you feel after a good work out is evidence of its ability to control ADHD? A number of studies have recently been released, all of which found that physical exercise helps children to focus, perform better on cognitive tasks, and – in the case of children with ADHD especially – led to improvement in reading and math (both of which ADHD inhibits). This is exciting news: if you’ve ever felt unfocused, it might be time to hit the gym. Getting your heart pumping can do wonders for your brain.

2) Exercise unleashes your creative energy. We’ve all heard the story of Archimedes struggling with a problem, until he hops in the bathtub and comes up with the solution with a great cry of “Eureka!”. It turns out that you don’t have to take 3 baths a day if you’re feeling a bit creatively blocked. Not when there’s a gym nearby!

A study published in the Creative Research Journal found that creative potential was significantly boosted in the hours following exercise. And the effects last two hours or more. Sounds like a pretty good reason to hit the gym before you tackle any creative project, doesn’t it?

3) Exercise boosts your sex drive… and makes sex better. Enough said? Here’s proof: A 2013 study found that exercise improved sex drives in women taking antidepressants. Even if you’re not taking antidepressants, if a little 30 minutes of exercise can improve your bedroom activities, isn’t it worth a trip to the gym?

What about you? What surprising side effects of exercise have you found? Share your stories in the comments below.