The following story is excerpted from TIME’s special edition, The Science of Exercise, which is available at Amazon.
Dr. Dena Oaklander, a psychiatry resident—who also happens to be my sister—is the last person you’d ever expect to become a bodybuilder. She’s naturally scrawny and a little bit shy, not the type of person to beast out at the gym—or so I once thought.
In medical school, she’d counsel patients on the importance of exercise and feel like a hypocrite, she says, since she did little but shuttle from home to the hospital, spending her rare free time catching up on sleep. “My body didn’t feel good, and my mind didn’t feel very good either,” she says. But once she started taking her own advice, as a resident at Loyola University Medical Center, Dena quickly became a hard-core strength-training fanatic. Within a month of learning how to lift weights, she noticed she had more energy without needing as much sleep, she felt far less stressed out, and she saw her body tone up fast.
Excerpted from time.com