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Why your brain loves it when you exercise, plus 3 easy ways to work out at home

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This post is part of TED’s “How to Be a Better Human” series, each of which contains a piece of helpful advice from people in the TED community; browse through all the posts here. 

Motivation is not in high supply these days — but ensuring that we move a little bit every day is more important for us than ever, according to Wendy Suzuki PhD, a neuroscientist at New York University.

Dr. Suzuki studies the neurological impacts of exercise, and she says that just a walk around the block or a 10-minute online workout will not only improve your day but also benefit your brain in a lasting way.

“Exercising to increase your fitness literally builds brand new brain cells. It changes your brain’s anatomy, physiology and function,” she explains. “Every time you work out, you are giving your brain a neurochemical bubble bath, and these regular bubble baths can also help protect your brain in the long term from conditions like Alzheimer’s and dementia.”

This sounds great. But it’s hard to turn those long-term benefits into motivation to get up and do something every day.

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