The mental health benefits of exercise
HEALTHY BODY = HEALTHY MIND!
The above statement may sound a bit cringe but it is so true! How we treat our bodies has a huge impact not only just on our physical health but our mental health too.
I know, I know, sometimes the thought of exercise can feel like the LAST thing you want to be thinking about but let me ask you... have you EVER regretted a workout?
Exercise stimulates positive endorphins, clears your head and lifts your mood (I didn't make this up, this is fact!)
Getting out of our heads, and into our bodies can assist in lifting any dark mood, we are forced to change our focus, focusing on the activity we are doing rather than the racing, all consuming thoughts that had been previously occupying our minds.
EXERCISE = THERAPY
As someone who has suffered with both depression and anxiety, I can 100% relate to the above statement! Ok, exercise isn't actually therapy as we know it... but what this statement means is that exercise assists in increasing positive mental health and improving our moods. Many people exercise purely to stay in shape. I exercise because I know it lifts my mood, it makes me feel good, it empowers me, I feel like I can take on almost anything after!
Don't think that when I am talking about exercise, I am talking about BEASTING yourself! Just getting out and walking counts as exercise, and this alone can lift your mood, not only because you are moving your body and getting those endorphins going but also connecting with nature can release those happy hormones. DID YOU KNOW!! Being around trees can help reduce the symptoms of depression - I was told this by my doctor many many years ago, in my early 20's.
If HIIT workouts, or running or even going to the gym is not your thing, then why not join a team sport! Team sports are a great way to keep fit as well as making new connections. I also am a huge advocate for exercising with friends, not only for accountability but it's far more fun!
Now more than ever we need to be looking out for our mental health. I have had conversations with people recently who had never suffered with mental health issues, but since the global pandemic have experienced low moods and anxiety.
Make your physical and mental health your priority!
Disclaimer: If you are reading this and struggling with your mental health then I urge you to speak with your GP