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11 Reasons WHY Exercise is Recommended for Your Mental Health

Therapy in Gaithersburg- exercise

Okay honestly, you’ve heard that exercise is good for you time and time again. But do you actually know WHY?

Maybe after reading this post, you’ll finally understand why you should have some physical activity three times a week and get moving!

Here are 11 reasons why exercise is recommended for your mental health:

1- Helps you deal with stress

Exercise increases norepinephrine, a chemical that can help the body’s ability to deal with stress.

2- Boosts your MOOD

It raises serotonin levels in your brain which not only boosts your mood but also improve your sleep and appetite which are negatively affected by depression.

3- Relieve pain and stress

When you physically exert yourself, your body releases endorphins that trigger a positive feeling in the body and reduces perception of pain.

4- Physically relaxes you when you’re stressed

Ever noticed when you’re stressed your muscles are tense especially in your neck, face, and shoulders? Physical activity helps relax the muscles and relieve tension in the body.

5- Reduces ADHD symptoms

Exercise instantly boosts the brain's dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin levels, all of which affect focus and attention.

6- Physical and Social Stimulation

When you jog with someone or take a class, you’re not only getting the physical and mental benefits, but you’re also getting social stimulation as well!

7- A good distraction

Have you ever tried thinking of something while trying to master a yoga pose? Or while swimming laps? You’re usually focused on your form or body movements. It’s a good distraction from upsetting thoughts.

8- Boost Confidence

Go ahead and set a goal for yourself. I mean a specific goal like being able to swim 30 laps in 30 minutes, bench 225 pounds, run a mile in under 10 minutes, or whatever your heart desires. By meeting your exercise goal, you end up boosting your confidence!

9- You get that GOOD sleep

“People sleep significantly better and feel more alert during the day if they get at least 150 minutes of exercise a week, a new study concludes.” Why you may ask? According to the National Sleep Foundation, “Exercise triggers an increase in body temperature, and the post-exercise drop in temperature may promote falling asleep. Exercise may also reduce insomnia by decreasing arousal, anxiety and depressive symptoms.”

Well this is new isn’t it! Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor are stimulated which helps the growth of new brain cells in the hippocampus. The hippocampus plays a critical role in creative thinking.

11- Helps keep the brain YOUNG

As we age, our brain ages too. We begin to have cognitive impairments including Alzheimer and other forms of dementia. According to a study, there is 7.7 million new cases of people with dementia each year worldwide! So this brings us to the hippocampus.. again. It isn’t just for creative thinking, it’s also an important part of the brain for memory and learning. Exercise boosts the chemicals in the brain that support and prevent degeneration of the hippocampus.

The best thing about working out is that you can do it anywhere! You don't have to join a gym to go for a jog, a walk in nature, or for an intense workout. I highly recommend Shaun T DVD's for in home INTENSE workouts in as little as 25 minutes called T-25! So next time you're feeling too lazy to get physical just think of these 11 reasons why you should!

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