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September 21, 2010 at 8:00 AMComments: 0 Faves: 0

3 Simple Mood-Boosting Exercises

By Smarty More Blogs by This Author

Exercising is well known for strengthening the immune system, preventing various diseases, and increasing energy. But can certain physical activities actually help to improve the mood you are in? The answer is that staying active on a regular basis does lead to higher self-esteem and a better outlook on life. These are key elements in avoiding depression, reducing stress, and battling anxiety. In fact, there are exercises that can instantly change your mood in a positive way when you perform them.But first...

How does exercise affect emotions?

On a physical level, elevated activity raises your body temperature, which has a calming effect on your mental state. Neurotransmitters and endorphins are two chemicals in the brain that are released when you exercise. Both of them have been shown to counter depression and negative moods. In addition to the physiological effects, exercising gives you an outlet to work through things in a productive way.

For example, if you are feeling frustrated or upset, a workout channels all of those feelings into activities that help make you stronger. And you are simultaneously distracted from your problems while concentrating on the exercises. Eventually, your confidence will build as you feel healthier and look better. Being in shape has many short and long term advantages, including more stamina and endurance. However, it is crucial that you remain consistent with your exercise program and get plenty of rest so that your body can enjoy those advantages.

#1 Walking

The next time you are having a bad day, leave your troubles behind and go for a brisk walk. Concentrate on moving your arms to accompany your legs and breathe in and out. Walking around the block will clear your thoughts and relax your mind. If you prefer running, try sprinting for a short session. Either way, make an effort to stay alert and warm up by stretching to lower the risk of injury.

#2 Aerobics

Fast-paced aerobics that feature different exercises in one routine keep your attention and your blood flowing. This is especially effective in burning fat and boosting your metabolism, causing your energy to rise as well. With a variety of movements to choose from, you should have no trouble selecting ones that you find fun and exhilarating. Enhance the workout experience by playing music and thinking about people or situations that inspire you the most. Another good type of aerobic activity is bicycle riding on a stationary or mobile bike. The above cardio activities should be done responsibly at moderate to high intensity levels in order to give your mood the boost it needs as quickly as possible. It is not necessary to have a full workout with them and you can do shorter, 10 to 15 minute sessions.

#3 Resistance Training

Nothing takes your mind off current problems as quickly as a physical challenge. You can use weights or your body’s own natural resistance to jumpstart the good mood inside of you that is just waiting to get out. Some exercises to consider are push-ups, pull-ups, and squats. In general, resistance training not only boosts your emotions, but it also builds and tones your muscles as an added benefit.


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