How Your Body Changes Once You Start Exercising [An Interesting Timeline]

See what could happen after a day, a week, a month and a year.

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Whether you’re a complete beginner or a “re-starter”, you must be wondering how physical activity will impact you and your health. Well, I have some good news for you: Exercising will not only change your lifestyle but will also have some interesting body changes and benefits!

The next question is usually: how long does it take to see the results? You might get surprised, but the benefits of working out will actually come from day one. But don’t be disappointed if not all of them! There are definitely some changes that will only arrive after a while.

Let’s look at the timeline of your body will change once you start exercising!

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Exercising Benefits On Your Body

Exercising makes the body pump more blood to the muscles. This will increases the blood flow, which is beneficial for your brain.

The minute you start exercising, your brain cells will function at a higher level. The increased blood flow to your brain will make you more alert and awake during exercising and more focused after.

As we all know exercising often comes with pain. Responding to this pain, your brain will start releasing certain types of chemicals that include endorphins. They are often known as the source of euphoria and will not just kill your pain, but also make you feel more dedicated.

Read about exercising and endorphins here

Once you’re done with exercising, your brain will release more endorphins, which will put you in a better mood for the day.

When you start moving, your body’s energy expenditure increases. The energy it burns comes primarily from glucose, which is stored in the body as glycogen. Glycogen is generated by your liver when it processes carbs. With decreased glycogen levels your body will then start turning fat and protein into glucose to help meet your rising energy demands.

Therefore, your fat storage will be better mobilized once you start exercising and your body fat will start to decrease.

Note, you’ll only maintain your body fat loss if your calories in don’t exceed your calories out. So let’s put it this way, if you head to In-N-Out straight after the gym, you will probably gain back what you’ve lost.😉

This is why you should track your nutrition, to hold yourself accountable. Find out how by visiting  The Ultimate Tracking Guide.

It only takes a few cardio sessions to become fitter and improve your energy. After a few workouts, mitochondria in your cells will increase rapidly. Mitochondria are said to be the “power generators” of your cells, which turn oxygen and nutrients into adenosine triphosphate (ATP). And ATP is basically what powers the metabolic activities of your cells.

So, your cells will have more mitochondria which will make your energy production more efficient. Physical activity will become easier from this point forward.

Mitochondria is not only good for pumping you up with energy. It’s also beneficial for your health, as it protects your cells and makes them stronger. So once mitochondria start to increase in your cells, your health will start to improve.

After training for a month, your muscles will start to grow. Changes in your muscle mass at this point will not only be felt but also visible. Both slow and fast twitch muscle fibers in your muscle cells will start to grow and your muscles will get stronger.

As a result of growing muscles and becoming fitter, your metabolic rate will also start to increase. If your metabolism is faster, you burn more calories also at resting state. This means that even when you’re sleeping, your calories burnt will be higher than before.

Your metabolism will work harder 24/7 from this point onwards and you’ll drop those pounds easier.

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After a month of exercising, you’ll already become fitter. So welcome higher intensity, higher reps, heavier weights and longer cardio sessions. As your workout levels shift, your brain will release more endorphins. So ultimately, it won’t only affect your physique, but your mind as well.

As you become fitter, your daily life will also become easier. Let’s just think about a few basic examples. You’ll be able to climb stairs easier without gasping after floor 2. You’ll easily walk to the store that’s 10 minutes from home. You won’t miss the bus if you have to run to catch it. And you’ll not need your husband to carry your bags after grocery shopping.

Life will simply become easier.

If you’re in the weight lifting department, after 6 months you’ll start to get those compliments from friends and family for sure. Your muscle growth will be clearly visible with bare eyes at this point. But what’s even better, you will feel more powerful as well.

You’ll have a greater endurance and won’t be afraid to challenge yourself. Lifting heavier weights and increasing the difficulty of your training will not be a problem anymore.

However, to enjoy these benefits, you’ll also need to pay attention to the nutrition side. Here’s a great guide to calculate the your ideal macro ratio!

When you exercise, you need more oxygen. Therefore, your heart rate increases to pump more blood and increase oxygen circulation. After 6 months or so, your heart will grow in size from the more intense blood pumping. As a result of this process, it will also get stronger and become more efficient.

Additionally, your resting heart rate and your blood pressure will decrease, which lowers the risk of heart attack.

It is also worth noting, that if your blood pressure is too low it can lead to problems such as blurred vision and dizziness. Try these home remedies to treat low blood pressure.

Exercising and having a healthy weight can have major benefits on your bone health. Weight-bearing exercises, in particular, have the greatest positive effects on your bones. These include running, jumping rope, stair climbing and skiing. Additionally, according to the Medicine and science in sports and exercise’s study, resistance training can also improve bone density.

Changes in your skeleton will start to be measurable after half a year. And your bone density will increase after 12 months of exercising. The higher your bone density, the lower the chances of fracture.

We usually don’t think about this, but exercising doesn’t only have physical, but also mental benefits. First of all, exercising is an amazing way of stress relief. After a year of “gym-therapy”, your body will learn how to deal with mental stress effectively. And as we all know, less stress means better mental health.

Secondly, exercising can also reduce anxiety. According to the Society for Adolescent Medicine’s publication, physical activity raises self-esteem, which completely makes sense. After a year of regular exercising, you’ll definitely feel better in your skin and become more confident.

Lastly, you’ll also experience better brain function and sharpen memory. The surprising perks of exercising.

Leaving the most important one as last, exercising will not feel like an obligation anymore. After one year, you’ll finally enjoy your workouts and maybe even become a little bit addicted. After experiencing all the benefits, you’ll suddenly feel like wanting to go to the gym. But don’t worry, as long as it’s a healthy addiction, it’ll be for your own good!

Check-out The Best Fitness Apps of 2017 to Get Moving

So now that you know how your body changes from exercising, don’t wait anymore! Get up, go to the gym and start enjoying all these health benefits after day one!


Download Our FREE
Spartan Race Training Plan
Our comprehensive training plan provides you with 30-days of exercises right up to race day!
Download e-Book


Lilla Laczo

Lilla is a content writer and community manager at Shape.

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Download Our FREE
Spartan Race Training Plan
Our comprehensive training plan provides you with 30-days of exercises right up to race day!
Download e-Book