How Exercise Can Support Your Mental Health￼
You probably already know that exercise is good for your body, right? Hitting the gym to build muscle, going for a run to improve your fitness, or stretching to improve flexibility – these are all common exercises to stay fit and healthy. But, did you know that numerous scientific studies have shown that exercise is also good for your mental health?
This blog will explore some of the ways that exercise can support your mental health and hopefully inspire you to get moving, no matter what your fitness level or age!
Exercise helps you to feel happy
When you exercise, your brain releases chemicals called endorphins. Endorphins actually improve your mood because they create feelings of happiness and euphoria. The age-old saying of ‘a runners high’ definitely counts for something here!
Research has shown that endorphins are also incredibly important in managing depression, which is the reason why doctors all over the world recommend regular exercise if you are feeling sad or have been diagnosed with depression.
It reduces stress and anxiety
Did you know that exercise also releases a chemical which helps to moderate your brain’s response to stress? Stress relief is one of the most common mental health benefits of exercise. A work out can also help to alleviate mental stress and tension, especially stress caused from work.
Moderate and high intensity aerobic exercise can reduce feelings of anxiety. Studies have also shown that chemicals released in your brain during and after exercise can help people suffering with anxiety disorders.
So, the next time you have a tough day in the office or start to feel overwhelmed or anxious, make sure to go for a walk or a workout.
Regular exercise can boost self-confidence
Studies have shown that people who exercise have higher levels of self-confidence, self-esteem and self-worth. These studies have also shown that undertaking regular exercise and feeling physically fit enhances self-love – regardless of weight, gender, size or age!
These feelings can help you feel more confident as you navigate the workplace, friendships, relationships and also improve your sex life.
It improves brain function and memory
Countless research projects have concluded that high intensity workouts can enhance overall brain performance and even create new brain cells! This can help with decision making and learning.
Studies have also shown that regular exercise boosts the production of chemicals in the brain which strengthen the hippocampus. This is the part of your brain which aids memory and increases your ability to learn new things.
Exercise has also been proven to slow cognitive decline as you age. This can help to decrease chances of developing neurological diseases, such as Alzheimer’s and dementia, later on in life.
It increases productivity
Research shows that people who regularly exercise have more energy and are more productive in comparison to others who do not exercise. It may seem hard to find the time to fit in a work out, however you will be more productive with your day if you can!
Exercise can help with addiction recovery
Dopamine highs are associated with a number of addictive substances; however, research has shown that dopamine is also released when working out. Scientists and doctors have worked together to show that short exercise sessions can produce a natural source of dopamine and help to distract people suffering from drug or alcohol addiction at the same time.
This natural dopamine release also helps to reset your body clock, meaning your body can have a much better sleep at night.
Release your creative side
Interesting research has shown that a high intensity work out can increase feelings of creativity for two hours post-work out! This was found to be enhanced if you work out outdoors in nature too.
Get started now with Every Bodies Physio
If you are still unsure about exercise or you are struggling with the motivation to exercise, but want to reap the benefits for your mental health, we are here to help.
We can provide a tailored service based on your own body, lifestyle, job, needs and expectations.
Make an appointment with us online here or contact us on 07 3269 0114 (Brighton Clinic) or 07 3822 1405 (Wellington Point Clinic) to make an initial appointment today.