Exercise varies in a lot of individuals and depends on its end product; its form is infinite and its structure unique. To name a few, there is CrossFit, Tae Bo and Zumba; MMA, Boxing and Jiu jitsu; marathons, triathlons and adventure racing. We have it in sports - ultimate, basketball, soccer and etc. We use it in daily life like sweeping the floor, carrying things or walking on errands. For instance, sweeping the floor (or any repeated and sustained motion) may strengthen our coordination and develop our efficiency for it. Each form to its own discipline and function.
Exercise can be considered effortless and simple. A simple but significant first step in getting to this conclusion is to actually realize that exercise IS effortless and simple.
Exercise - why include it in our daily lives? Tons of reasons - body efficiency, strength, tone, health, and etc. It leaves you breathless as you try to outrun its stare; it breaks up the strength you command out of you. Exercise creates a balance of forces. As a hammer strikes through an anvil, it forges the potential out of you. It molds you to a higher quality.
Whatever your reason may be, exercise is good reason enough.
Exercise is usually felt as enduring hardship or an almost-impenetrable wall. It is like swimming against gravity - its force like a waterfall and its current like a shaper. It shapes character into your mind as it significantly builds your way of thinking and adapts with your body in being a carrier of this vigor.
When exercise is viewed as functional, then it must be logical. But then, functional to an extent; when we exercise, we perform a set of actions to achieve a purpose. That purpose may be increasing your strength, making the activity simpler or toning up yourself - it has to have purpose to be functional.
Let me give an example. Right before I started playing Ultimate, I stopped my routine of weightlifting (6x/week for a year) and my habit of smoking cigarettes (5~6 years). I was not healthy but I think it's fair to say I had good base strength. Regardless, I could throw strong but my hand-eye coordination was weak. I could run but I couldn't endure long.
If you are likened to a knife, then purpose sharpens its function. If a knife was considered to be used as a spoon despite its qualities, then purpose would logically dull its edge and try to increase the surface area of its blade (to be able to carry more food).
The first thing I did was improve my throwing and catching skills; at first, it was difficult especially when the wind is around. It didn't take long but I could throw fairly well. I think muscle memory helped me a lot here; the body could only become more efficient in doing when something is done repeatedly, better with good form and good execution.
I ran farther through rain, heat and wind; and, on mud, field and sand. Through the years, I consider those challenges as an expanding wall - cannot be broken, only pushed. Now, I can say that those were only small steps that took me up to this state; what more could have individuals endured to mature as champions?
Giving place for exercise in your lifestyle is logical and beneficial. It instills a proactive outlook and creates opportunities to grow good habits. Like a sword forged by hammer and anvil, you become sharper and more refined.
... But too much exertion might impair your progress. A partner and inverse of exercise is rest. An analogy can be found during forging a sword, the material is dunked into a tub of water as a part of its process. You need to rest and recover to balance the contradicting forces. I will continue on rest in another post.