Einstein was a smart guy and yet he lived the last 39 of his 76 years of life with chronic illness, relating to multiple complications of digestive system disorders, for his smoking and lack of exercise.

Not so smart – Right?

Human’s have evolved to maximize the chances of survival in a harsh environment, little food, and needing protection from the elements. Conserving energy was integral to longevity for prehistory humans.

Our mind and environment have significantly changed since our hunter-gather days. Unfortunately, our body’s health is governed by the same hormonal system that kept our ancient ancestors safe to reproduce.

The endocrine (hormonal) system is the collection of glands that produce hormones and regulate metabolism, growth, and development, tissue function, sexual function, reproduction, sleep, mood, etc.

Our hormonal system is independent of our belief systems and intelligence, it is the reason that even the most brilliant minds (like Einstein) suffer physical health problem from lack of exercise.


It’s not a matter of mind over exercise


We are genetically programmed to be “couch potatoes” no amount of will power, motivation or logic will get us off our backside if we don’t have to.

A recent study (published Neuropsychologia,  2018, ) by researchers from the University of British Columbia (UBC) in Canada, concluded (among other things):

  • Additional brain resources are required to escape a general attraction toward sedentary behaviors.


Our brain is not a muscle, it’s a constantly active organ, even when we are asleep.  It uses 20% of the blood’s oxygen and glucose to keep functioning properly and produces enough electrical energy to power a 40-watt light bulb for 24 hours (according to the National Institute of Drug Abuse).

The human brain is a voracious consumer and thrifty spender of energy; it hijacks our intelligence, stopping any attempt at expending energy on “unnecessary” exercise.

The solution is to short circuit the brain’s hold over our body with building muscle tone. Our muscles regulate the hormonal system independent of the brain’s governance.

Exercise creates a positive feedback loop to the brain by circulating oxygenated blood, and releasing feel-good hormones from muscle usage.

Here is how to use your higher intellect to drive your reluctant brain:

  • Set up a non-negotiable schedule for exercise in the morning.
  • Have a workout plan ready to go. (Perhaps our 9-minute workout will suit you?)
  • Record your workout; the visual will keep you engaged with your progress. (Download your 4-week tracker)
  • Rinse and repeat every 4 weeks – that’s it!


The health cost of our growing intelligence


World Health Organisation (WHO) published their finding last year (2018) on worldwide trends in insufficient physical activity from 2001 to 2016.

The study tracked activity levels of 1.9 million people in 168 countries across the world during this time period and found no improvement in physical activity levels despite numerous public health initiatives advocating the benefits of exercise.

WHO, considers insufficient exercise now to be the leading risk factor for non-communicable diseases, negatively affecting mental health and quality of life.

The WHO recommends each adult do at least 150 minutes “moderate-intensity” exercise (brisk walking, swimming or gentle cycling) each week, or 75 minutes “vigorous-intensity” activity weekly.

An example of vigorous intensity exercise is our Shape- Up program or our daily 9-minute WELLth program +  21 minutes additional cardio activity three times per week, (like running, or cycling).

We humans may have a natural bias toward sedentary living. But we also have the ability to set up structures and allow the body an opportunity exercise, despite what our brains may think.

Therefore to live life with good health, we need to build our bodies to resist the brain sapping our energy and will to live.

I have included a link to my FREE 2019 WELLth Challenge for you to consider. It is 9 minutes of daily exercise every morning for 4 weeks. You don’t need motivation, will power or ability.  You do need a reason to get up in the morning, for me its one alarm clock and one very very loud alarm clock!

If you have any question I would love to hear from you in the comments below. Or you can send me an email any time! Anna@SquareBoxFitness.com


Live well with fitness!


Written by Anna: Nutritionist and Exercise Therapist @SquareBoxFitness.com