Your Brain Doesn’t Want You to Exercise

January 30, 2024

If the benefits of physical activity were distilled into a pill, everyone would be on it. Studies show that moving improves nearly every aspect of health: boosting sleep, strength, and mental well-being while slashing the risk of chronic conditions and premature death. What’s more, studies show that exercise has a positive impact even when done in very short chunks and with no equipment or fancy gym membership required.

Still, most people don’t exercise nearly enough. According to data published in 2023, less than a third of U.S. adults get the government-recommended amount of physical activity in their free time: at least 20 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic movement (think brisk walking) per day, plus a couple muscle-strengthening sessions (such as resistance training) each week. TIME