If you believe the reason most people adopt fitness as a way of life is because they want to become bigger, faster and stronger or get a “hot-bod”; you might be slightly mistaken. Sure, exercise can improve your physical health and your physique, trim your waistline, improve your sex life, and even add years to your life. But that’s not what motivates most people to stay active.
Exercise is not just about aerobic capacity and muscle size. Studies show that making time for exercise provides some serious mental benefits and these benefits are one of the primary reasons that people keep coming back for more. Join us as we look closely at the numerous mental benefits of regular exercise.
Reduces Stress and Anxiety
It is a well known fact that exercise releases neurochemicals into the brain. The big ones being endorphins, dopamine, and norepinephrine. These chemicals are associated with better cognitive functioning, alertness and elevated moods. In addition to this, it also helps remove stress hormones from your body – cortisol and adrenaline. Finally, exercise can also serve as a distraction, allowing you to find some quiet time to break out of the cycle of negative thoughts that feed stress and anxiety.
Improves Self-Confidence and Self-Esteem
It’s of no surprise that exercise can boost your confidence. In controlled studies, children and adolescents improved self-confidence after exercise. Anyone who has made a body transformation has felt the positive effects exercise has on self esteem. You look better, feel better, and are more confident in yourself in general.
Exercising regularly is one of the easiest and most effective ways to reduce the symptoms of ADHD and improve concentration, motivation, memory, and mood. Motor skills are improved and blood flow is improved to the brain as physical activity immediately boosts the brain’s dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin levels—all of which affect focus and attention.
Better sleep and more energy
Even short bursts of exercise in the morning or afternoon can help regulate your sleep patterns. If you prefer to exercise at night, relaxing exercises such as yoga or gentle stretching can help promote sleep. Also, Increasing your heart rate several times a week will give you more get-up-and-go as the improved blood circulation and endorphins promote an overall feel-good mindset. Start off with just a few minutes of exercise a day, and increase your workout as you feel more energized.
Improves Emotional Strength and Stability
When faced with mental or emotional challenges in life, exercise can help you cope in a healthy way. It seems that people who get regular exercise are able to maintain a more positive attitude after something stressful occurs. This gives them another level of protection from the day to day stress that they experience throughout the day.
Prevention will always be better than cure and the above reasons should give you enough reasons to improve your quality of life and take steps towards a fit healthy lifestyle.