Little or no physical exercise can increase the risk of depression, and a poor diet can decrease your sense of wellbeing, so regular exercise and physical activity should be part of any mental healthcare.
There is a good reason why exercise is recommended for improving mood. It’s those endorphins; the chemicals our body releases when we get moving that contribute to a feeling of wellness post exercise. But it doesn’t stop with a post workout good mood. Exercise improves your alertness, makes everyday movement easier and improves sleep.
Any amount of exercise is better than none, and for those who are currently sedentary, the gains will be felt with even small additions in physical activity. Health experts recommend 30 minutes or more at least three times a week, remembering that it is longer term adherence to exercise that is more important than how long you move in a single session.
Physical activity challenges both the mind as well as the body, as learning new skills increases brain activity. This means that instead of fearing a new gym exercise, or worrying about feeling uncoordinated in a group exercise/aerobics class, these activities should be embraced. Even better news is that exercising in a social setting will also contribute to an improvement in mood through having interaction and hopefully fun with others.
It’s often hard to get motivated to exercise and be active when you are feeling low, but the benefits far outweigh the effort.
Take these steps to make getting active easier:
- Exercise with a friend
- Try one of our R2H group exercise classes. You can disappear into the group and share the energy of those around you.
- Talk to us, we will be able to give you the right advice about how to add exercise into your life.
- Plan ahead and set up a routine so you know what you are going to do each day, even if it’s just a walk around the block.
- Start gradually and build up as you start to feel the benefits on your mood and physical activity and fitness levels.
- Do activities you enjoy. There are so many exercise options which means you will be able to find one that suits you regardless of age, or current level of physical activity
FROM: REPS MEDIA RELEASE 7 JULY 2015