Daily Workout is The New Prescription for Depression, Anxiety, and Stress
We all know that regular workout is necessary for a healthy body. However, workout is also one of the best ways to improve your mental health. Regular exercise can have a positive effect on anxiety, depression, ADHD, and more. Not only this, it also helps in relieving stress, helps you sleep better, improves memory, and boosts your overall mood. And the good thing is that you don’t need to be a fitness fanatic to reap its benefits. Research shows that even modest amounts of workout make an effective difference. No matter what your age or fitness level, you can always learn to use the workout as a powerful tool to stay healthy.
The main mental health benefits of workout
Working out is not just about muscle size or aerobic capacity. Doing regular workout not only improves your physical health and apperance, but it also trims down your waistline, improves your intimate relationships, and adds years to your life. However, these aren’t the only benefits that inspire most people to stay active.
People usually love working out on a daily basis, simply because it gives them an enormous sense of well-being. It makes them feel more energetic throughout the day, sleep better, have sharper memories, and makes them feel more relaxed and positive about themselves. But did you know that workout is scientifically proved to be a powerful medicine for most common mental health issues?
Workout and depression
Studies show that daily workout is capable in treating mild to moderate depression as effectively as a prescribed antidepressant without any the side-effects. Other than relieving someone from depression, research also suggests that maintaining a workout schedule helps in preventing any relapse.
Doing daily exercise can be a powerful depression-fighter for various reasons. It promotes various changes in the brain, like neural growth, reduced inflammation, and new activity patterns that give the feeling of calm and well-being. It also helps in releasing endorphin, a powerful chemical in your brain that helps you feel good and energize your spirits. Finally, workout also helps as a distraction, letting you find some quiet time out of the cycle of negative feeling that feed depression.
Workout and anxiety
Doing daily workout is also a natural and effective anti-anxiety treatment. It helps in relieving tension, boosts mental and physical health, and supports well-being through the release of endorphin hormone.
Try to feel the sensation of your feet hitting the floor or the rhythm of your heartbeat and breathing, or the sensation of the wind on your skin. By adding such mindfulness elements you will not only improve your physical condition, but you will also control the flow of constant worries streaming through your head.
Workout and stress
Have you ever noticed how your body feels when you are under stress? Your muscles become tense, especially your neck, face, and shoulders, leaving you with headaches and neck or back pain. You might also feel tightness in your chest, pounding pulse, or muscle cramps. Insomnia, heartburn, diarrhea, stomachache, or frequent urination are also some common consequences you might experience. The stress of all these physical symptoms can lead to even more stress, thereby creating a vicious cycle between your mind and body.
But doing regular workout is proved to be an effective way to break this chain. Other than releasing endorphin in the brain, physical activity also helps in relaxing the muscles and relieving tension in the body. Since your body and mind are so closely linked,whenever your body feels good so will your mind.
Workout and ADHD
Regular exercise is an effective way to reduce the symptoms of ADHD and improve motivation, concentration, memory, and mood. Physical activity boosts the brain’s norepinephrine, dopamine, and serotonin levels—all of these hormones strongly affect focus and attention.
Workout and PTSD/trauma
Studies suggests that by focusing on your body and how it feels when you do a workout, can actually help your nervous system to become unstuck and begin to get out of the immobilization stress response which characterizes PTSD and trauma. Also, try to pay close attention to the physical sensations in your muscles and joints, and your insides as your body moves. Workout that involves cross movement like walking (especially in sand), swimming, running, weight training, and dancing are some of your best forms of physical activities out there.
Outdoor activities like sailing, hiking, mountain biking, whitewater rafting, rock climbing, and skiing downhill and cross-country are also proved to help reducing the symptoms of PTSD.
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