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Getting Enough Exercises

Subject: Medicine
Number of words/pages: 4795 words/16 pages
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Background information

I am a twenty-five-year-old female. I am not married but in a steady relationship, even though my partner lives few miles away. The behavior I seek to change is to move from a sedentary lifestyle and get more routine exercises. I have been interested in adding exercises to my routine since I was fourteen but I did not start until I was seventeen years old. Then, I often jogged around the block in the mornings, attended a basketball training and occasionally went to a gym in our block with my friend. I enjoyed many benefits that came with exercises like being physically fit, good sleep, mood, and health. My weight was often around 40-42 kilograms, and I did well in the classroom. However, two years later, I started reducing the time I spent to exercise since I took a part-time job and by the age of twenty years, I had stopped exercising. In five years, I have added over fifteen kilograms pushing my basal metabolic index to twenty-three. I believe resuming the exercising habit will greatly help me return to form and stay away from health issues related to inactivity.

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I believe that I will enjoy lots of benefit through the establishment of routine exercises. First, it will help me relax from my routine daily schedule at school and work. Besides, it will protect me from various conditions resulting from inactivity. Presently, I lead a sedentary lifestyle that may predispose me to depression, heart problems and mood disorder among others. I also need to maintain physical fitness through regulation of my body weight. Therefore, I seek to change my behavior to have routine exercises to stay healthy and boost my self-image.

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Literature Review

Exercise is an activity in which an individual makes a physical effort to promote health and fitness. Yamada & Sone, (2014) describes four types of exercises like dancing, swimming, walking, running and jogging, but lists of exercises extend far beyond this. Various studies have been done to show the differences between individuals doing exercises with those who do not. Many studies show that leading routine daily exercises has numerous benefits to an individual both mentally and physically. This part summarizes the various literature on the behavior change in exercises and benefits of exercises to the body and the brain.

Application of Theory

Social Cognitive Theory

This theory describes the methods and psychosocial changes that enhance and influence dynamics health behaviors. The theory has various constructs used to delineate behavior change in human namely, reciprocal prototypical, dynamics and triadic among others. According to the theory, environmental, individual and health aspects play a significant role in installing behavioral change in an individual. Adopting this theory to change a behavior depends on the ability of a person to put a behavior into symbols, the capability of a person to visualize the results of participating in a certain behavior and to be in a position to learn through observation. Other factors include; gaining enough courage that can help the person participate in behavior, being in a position to control the behavior and lastly, to analyze and reflect on the experiences one undergoes in changing the behavior. The theory has been used by scientists and health educators in coming up with procedures that can provoke the above personal factors to cause changes in the behavior of a human.

The Social Cognitive theory constructs have huge application in my behavior change of getting enough exercises. The first construct is the social cognitive theory environmental construct. According to Baranowski, Perry, & Parcel, (2016), environmental construct refers to touchable factors outside the person that provides social support and opportunities for an individual to achieve the desired change. One of these construct in my change is a local gym that I plan to spend a total of 4 hours a week. The gyms will be a good avenue for aerobic exercises and moderate muscles building. The gym has an instructor who I will utilize to devise desirable exercises that will fit my routine. The second environmental aspect is neighborhood running track. I believe the positive utilization of the two avenues will be significant for me to achieve my goal I plan to utilize this track for a 30-minute morning run at least five days a week. I learned that personal factors and the environmental factors interact to cause changes in behavior. Utilizing the situation construct, I see my environment as an enabling factor to achieve my defined goals. In doing exercises, one needs an avenue to utilize, and I believe the tracking track and the gym will be the avenues.

Self-Determination Theory

The Self-determination theory postulates that both extrinsic and intrinsic motivation drives the urge for physical activities. In intrinsic motivation, a person takes part in physical activities because of satisfaction and innate pleasures (Ryan & Williams, 2016). Participating in physical activities makes a person feel happy and needs no rewards to be performed. Active organisms can act in their surroundings and practice their skills. Within Self-determination theory, intrinsic motivation makes people extend and apply the skills that they possess. Any growing organisms in the world should be able to move actively, manipulate and explore with the reason of challenging oneself (Ryan & Williams, 2016). Extrinsic motivation defines the relationship between activities and individuals. That is why every person in the world has his or her favorite activity. The time each activity is done is also a factor. However, extrinsic motivation entails involvement in an activity with the aim of being rewarded, avoid punishment, gain recognition and to be approved. Some people participate in activities not because it is interesting or enjoyable but because of the other benefits, one is supposed to get (Ryan & Williams, 2016). This may include boosting of one’s health look younger or regain body shape to perform other duties.


Recommendation for Research/Theory

In my refection, the social cognition theory stood up as an effective theory that can foster behavior change. Social cognitive theory application is significant in many ways to ensure one achieves their desired behavior change. First, the social cognitive theory identifies aspects that one need to monitor to ensure the desired goal is achieved. These aspects include personal efforts, environment, reinforcements and outcomes among other components that will make behavioral change a success. Secondary, the social cognitive theory makes the outcomes clear and designs approach through which the outcomes will be achieved. The social cognitive theory accommodates the fact that challenges will often be there to prevent an individual from achieving the desired behavior change. Therefore, it presents approaches through which such challenges should be addressed. Through the construct of reinforcement, people have an opportunity to increase some aspect and decrease others to accommodate challenges. In addition, self-control and self-efficacy constructs provide an individual with a chance to prevent the challenges long before they occur. Finally, the construct of reciprocal determination will ensure smooth interaction of various aspects like environment and personality to ensure the desired change is achieved.

Recommendation for Intervention

I recommend people to change their behavior and get enough exercises. First, I exercising regularly will help them to gain physical fitness. Besides, getting enough exercises will help one to develop strong muscles and bones. Starting exercises at an early age is a behavior one should foster to prevent bone related illness like osteoporosis and rheumatism. Exercises help slows down the loss of density in bones and mass and the weight of the muscles are maintained. The duration of exercising matters when determining the quality of exercises. An individual should do at least have at least 30 minutes exercise per day ranging from light exercises to intensive. Secondly, people should exercise for them to reduce risks of developing chronic diseases like heart disease and diabetes. Exercising makes, the heart stronger eliminating heart disorders and improving blood circulation. Therefore, exercises increase the flow of blood in the body increasing the amount of oxygen in the blood. Similarly, the level of sugar in the blood can be reduced if only one is taking many exercises. With the reduced amount of sugar in the blood, the insulin works better. It is in the exercise that one is able to sweat and reduce sweating at night. Other benefits of changing to increased exercises include stabilizing mood, improving sleep quality, and improving on sexual drive. Exercise fits people of all ages except those with medical conditions forbidding them. Exercising can be done any time of the day but earlier morning exercises and evening exercise are better than midday or night exercises.

1. Baker, J. S., & Brophy, S. (2014). Factors associated with low fitness in adolescents – A mixed methods study. Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 14, 764. https://doi.org/10.1186/1471-2458-14-764

2. Baranowski, T., Perry, C., L., & Parcel, G., S. (2016). How Individuals, Environments and Health Beehavior Interact. Health Behavior and Health Education.

3. Chelly, M. S., & Shephard, R. J. (2014). Effects of 8-Week In-season Plyometric Training on Upper and Lower Limb Performance of Elite Adolescent Handball Players. The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research, 28(5), 1401. https://doi.org/10.1519/JSC.0000000000000279

4. Diamond, A., & Adams, M. (2015). Effects of Physical Exercise on Executive Functions: Going beyond Simply Moving to Moving with Thought. Annals of Sports Medicine and Research, 2(1), 1011. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4437637/

5. Hamdorf, P. A., & Andrews, G. R. (2017). The effectiveness of exercise training in lowering blood pressure: a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials of 4 weeks or longer. Journal of Human Hypertension, 11(10), 641–649. https://doi.org/10.1038/sj.jhh.1000509

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7. Kramer, C. K., & Gross, J. L. (2016). Physical Activity Advice Only or Structured Exercise Training and Association With HbA1c Levels in Type 2 Diabetes: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 305(17), 1790–1799. https://doi.org/10.1001/jama.2011.576

8. Ryan, R., M., & Williams, G., C. (2016). Self-detrmination Theory and Physical Activity: The dynamics Of Motivation in Development and Wellness. Hellenic Journal of Psychology 4, University of Rochester, New York, USA. Vol. 6 (2016), Pp. 107-124

9. Walker, R. G., & Krause, M. P. (2015). Fitness and physical activity in youth with type 1 diabetes mellitus in good or poor glycemic control. Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 16(1), 48–57. https://doi.org/10.1111/pedi.12117

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