Exercise is vital to accomplishing your physical health goals, but did you know exercise helps improve mental health too? Studies show regular exercise can reduce stress, improve concentration and improve mood.
How Does Exercise Help?
Physical activity produces endorphins – chemicals in the brain that trigger positive feelings. So, when you exercise, you get a big boost to your mood and emotional state.
Exercise also helps you sleep better! Besides gives your body time to rest and recover, sleep is critical for lowering feelings of stress and anxiety.
But Exercise Isn’t Fun…
We beg to differ! If you hear the word “exercise” and immediately get a pit in your stomach, fear not! Even five minutes of aerobic activity can stimulate anti-anxiety effects. Check out our beginner’s guide to exercise if you’re new to physical activity for some easy ways to get your body moving. And remember, the more you move, the less stress you’ll experience!
Best Exercises to Lower Stress & Anxiety
1. Hiking Outside
Next time you head out for a walk, consider hiking a nearby trail surrounded by trees. Nature has a calming effect on the mind. So find a quiet trail, soak up some sun, and enjoy the fresh air. Try to shut out the busy, stressful world and focus on deep breathing.
Yoga combines stretching and strength exercises with deep breathing, which helps slow down and calm the mind. The combination of stretching and breathing leaves you feeling relaxed and refreshed. Click here for yoga tips for beginners.
Simply walking is an excellent low-impact activity that can be done anywhere, anytime! You set the pace and the intensity that you’re most comfortable with. The important thing is that you’re moving – walking is a great way to clear your mind and settle your nerves.
Next time you begin to feel overwhelmed or stress, try one of these activities. Remember, part of the journey to better health is learning new, healthy ways to manage life. Take care of yourself!