How to Get Smarter this Weekend

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Scenario: Dude, we're on a mission to be the smartest people in the world. We have to stop playing basketball for the rest of our lives. We can't run any more 5K invitationals, play football on Sundays, or bike 50-mile trails. We can't do anything else but read and study. Period. Conventional wisdom thinks so. Stereotypical nerds and jocks are worlds apart, aren't they?

Those smart nerds do something shocking.

When you study the smartest people in the world: the Nobel Prize winners, the Pulitzers', the Fields Medals', the Rhodes Scholars, and any other nerdy contest, you'll see that most make physical activity one of their top priorities. Why?

It's 'cuz exercising makes you smarter.

Exercising helps build your brain cells, making you one smart bitch. Says Psyched for Success's Layla Merritt:

Physical activity is as much a workout for your brain as for your body. Exercise actually stimulates growth in brain cells. Schoolchildren who exercise three or four times a week get higher than average exam scores. Senior citizens who walk regularly perform better on memory tests than their sedentary peers. In fact, as they age, walkers show far less cognitive decline than that of non-walkers.

And that's backed by University of San Francisco's Christin Anderson MS, who says that when you exercise, "you can think more clearly, perform better, and your morale is better. This is pure science -- stimulate your nervous system and function at a higher level."

A side benefit of exercise?

It makes you happier. Says Harvard's John Ratley MD, exercise "affects mood, vitality, alertness, and feelings of well-being." So when you're just lounging around this weekend, remind your bad-self:

"When I exercise, I become smarter. And, happier."

 

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Posted on August 27

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