We all know that exercise is important for our physical well-being but do we know it is of great significance for our mental health as well.
Exercising regularly can help to reduce anxiety, depression, ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) and PTSD (Post -Traumatic Stress Disorder). It helps you to sleep longer and enjoy a better sleep quality which in turn helps in relieving stress and uplifting your overall mood.
When your brain is feeling stressed or anxious, the rest of the body feels its impact. If your body feels good, so does your mind. Exercise or any other physical activity produces chemicals (Endorphins) in the brain that behave as natural painkillers which in turn reduces stress.
Research shows that indulging in aerobic exercise is a great way to beat anxiety and depression. An aerobic exercise involves jogging, hiking, running , swimming, dancing, weight lifting which mostly uses large muscle groups.
You don’t have to be a fitness fanatic for your physical and mental well-being. Research shows that moderate amounts of exercise can reap you the benefits. Irrespective of your age or fitness level, you can always learn to use exercise to deal with your mental and physical health problems, elevate and fix mood and improve self-esteem.
In the beginning, exercise can be the hardest part of your day but as you get into shape and feel the difference in yourself, you’ll begin to tolerate it, then enjoy it and finally it becomes a part of your life. Exercise is meditation in motion. As you begin to shed your daily tensions through exercising regularly, you may find that the resulting energy will help you to stay calm, motivated and focused in everything you do.
Don’t think of exercise as work. Find an activity that excites you – whether it’s dancing or an active tennis match and make it a part of your regular routine.
Now the question arises how to get yourself moving when you are exhausted or feeling low?
I recently read a book “Atomic Habits” by James Clear which stated, “Too often we fall into an all-or-nothing cycle. The problem is not slipping up ; the problem is thinking that if you can’t do something perfectly, then you shouldn’t do it at all.” You don’t realize how valuable it is to just show up on your bad days rather than do nothing. Simply doing something- ten squats, five sprints, a push-up anything – is huge. Don’t put up a zero.
And that’s something that keeps me going on my bad days.
Just simply try to not to break the streak of exercising everyday.
Tips for starting:
- Have a clear goal
- Enjoy your workout
- Don’t push yourself too hard in the beginning
- Vary your exercises every 6-8 weeks.
- Make it a habit
“Movement is a medicine for creating change in a person’s physical, emotional and mental states“