3 Ways Exercise Boosts Your Mood and Mind
Your body and mind go hand-in-hand
Ever felt happier after a workout or long walk? There’s a very good reason for that.
Not only does exercise have great physical benefits like toning muscles, losing weight or reducing the risk of certain diseases, it also boosts your mood, happiness and overall mental health too.
According to Beyond Blue, good mental wellbeing is associated with things like increased learning, creativity, productivity, pro-social behavior, positive relationships as well as good physical health and longer life expectancy.
How much exercise should you be doing?
The Australian Department of Health outlines that for people aged between 18 and 64 should partake in at least 2.5 to 5 hours of moderate intensity physical activity per week. This could include daily walks, light weights or yoga. Keep an eye out for our online yoga classes!
Alternatively, you could decide to do 1.25 to 2.5 hours of vigorous intensity physical activity each week, such as high intensity circuits, heavier weights or even a long run. Keep an eye out for our online workouts!
It’s important to remember that these aren’t strict rules and you can do a combination of both, or more if you wish to. Ultimately, any exercise is good, so try and limit the amount of time you spend sitting down, stand up often and get your body moving.
Ways exercise improves your mental wellbeing
Activates your body and mind
While exercise has shown to reduce risks of illnesses like high blood pressure, obesity and heart disease, physical activity is important for improving your mood, mental clarity, happiness, energy levels, motivation, and self-confidence.
According to healthdirect, during and after exercise, the brain releases chemicals called endorphins and serotonin which can instantly improve your mood. Plus, the more you move the more blood gets pumped into your brain which can assist in clearing the mind and stimulating memory.
In short, as you exercise your mind is activated in a positive way. So while you may think you’re doing squats just to strengthen your legs, you are actually strengthening your mind as well.
Reduces stress, anxiety and depression
Exercise is essential when it comes to living a healthy lifestyle, not only physically but mentally as well.
In fact, Harvard Health outlines that exercise has a whole bunch of benefits when it comes to relieving stress, anxiety and depression.
They say that stress can come in many forms whether that’s restlessness, feeling concerned or even having tight muscles. But that’s where exercise comes in.
No matter what type of physical activity you choose to do, getting your body moving can clear the mind, relax your muscles and reduce the stress you may feel. In turn, this can also assist with conditions like depression and anxiety.
Just remember, one workout isn’t it a quick fix. It’s all about regular and repetitive physical activity and developing long-standing healthy habits.
While it’s crucial to get out and get active as often as you can, it’s equally as important to get enough rest each night.
The US Sleep Foundation says that regular physical activity is a large contributor to having a good night’s sleep, which contributes to more alertness during the day.
They found that exercise in the morning or afternoon raises your body temperature a few degrees, which impacts the quality of your sleep overnight. Similarly, outdoor exercise exposes your body to natural sunlight which helps encourage your body’s natural body clock or sleep-wake cycle. So the more reps you get in day to day, the more ‘z’s’ you could catch night on night.