The Mental Health Benefits of Regular Exercise

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In today’s world, a lot of us hit the gym and start exercising in order to lose weight, improve our cardiovascular health, and get more fit but did you know that exercising is excellent for your mental health, too?

In the past few years or so, researchers have wondered about mental health benefits of exercise and how it affects our brain functioning. No matter your age or fitness level, (and yes, this ranges anywhere from elderly mall walkers to hardcore marathon and triathloners), studies have found that making time to get some exercise provides really great mental health benefits.

Get yourself motivated to workout by reading up on these unexpected ways that exercise affects our bodies and minds, and try some of the suggestions that the Kawartha Lakes fitness gym, know as Fit Body Boot Camp Kawartha Lakes, has on how to improve your mental health.

Reduce Your Stress

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Had a tough day at work or home? No need to stress, try going for a quick walk or jog to get your mind off of things. One of the most common ways people tend to deal with stress is by eating, even though it might feel good at the time, eating for comfort is a really dangerous pattern. Most people don’t realize that they should opt for a workout instead. Studies have found that not only does working out reduce physical stress, but it helps to improve your mental stress as well. The reason for this is because exercise has been shown to increase concentrations of the chemical that can control our brain’s response to stress called norepinephrine, thus making stress easier to handle. So, the next time you’re dealing with a stressful day try to get out there and get sweaty. Your body and mind will thank you for it later.

Endorphins Are Your Friend

Did you know that a 20 minute jog works better at relieving anxiety than a warm bubble bath? Recent studies show that endorphins can alleviate the symptoms that have to do with depression and anxiety. That’s why a lot of doctors recommend exercise for those who have issues with sadness or not being able to unwind.Finding an exercise routine or a fitness program that you like may be a tough task, but it’s well worth the effort! You’ve probably heard that exercise releases endorphins, and sure that’s great and all, but what does that really mean to you? Basically, endorphins are neurotransmitters that produce a happy and euphoric feeling when you are exposed to certain stimuli. Exercise just happens to be the best way to stimulate the production of endorphins and that is what gives you that awesome feeling after you’ve completed a workout.
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So, the next time you’re feeling a little blue head to the gym, or better yet look for a group personal training program like a boot camp to help you get on the right track. Fitness boot camps are good because you’re able to get in a full body workout in a short amount of time, and not only that, but boot camps are a great way to meet new people. The combination of endorphins from exercise and making new friends is an awesome way to knock out depression, anxiety, and stress.

Boost Your Brain

Working out can bring you the body you want, and also the brain you want. In recent years, scientists found that cardiovascular exercise can actually create new brain cell, referred to in the science world as neurogenesis, and improve your brain’s overall performance. When you decide to take your fitness routine up a notch, you’ll get even more of a brain boost because an intense workout produces something called BDNF, a brain-derived protein that some believe helps with your decision making abilities and higher thinking/learning.

Sharpening your memory is another way that physical exercise benefits your mental health. Working out helps to produce new brain cells in your hippocampus, which is responsible for long-term memory and learning. Being physically active has even been linked to a child’s developing brain, so it’s important to get and stay active no matter what your age.

Now that you know a little more about the mental health benefits of regular exercise, the Kawartha Lakes gym urges you to get a move on so you feel better inside and out.


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