We all love to hate it, but exercise can help to improve your mood, combat chronic diseases and manage your weight. It also strengthens your lungs and heart, improves your sleep, and gives you more energy.
While all of that is very important, one of the best benefits of exercise is to relieve your stress!
How? Exercise boosts your endorphins, which are hormonal substances in the brain that create a sense of euphoria sometimes called a “runner’s high”.
Focusing on your body movements redirects your thoughts away from the stresses of your day and regular exercise elevates mood and reduces mild cases of anxiety and depression.
The key to using exercise as a tool to improve your health and reduce your stress is to do something you enjoy. While one of my best friends loves the gym I don’t connect with gym life. So when she heads to the gym I am headed to the yoga studio or the hiking trails.
Moderate exercise is defined as getting your heart rate up to a point where it is difficult to have a conversation while exercising. Exercising 5-6 times per week for 30-45 minutes per day is the best way to release the stress that’s weighing you down.
Things you can do today!
- Walking (You can do this anywhere. A lot of people do it on their lunch break at work)
- Horseback Riding
- Playing with your kids