Exercise helps the heart get pumping, which sends extra blood flow and happy chemicals through the brain. As part of a holistic approach to managing depression, exercise is a way to boost mood, take care of physical health, and stay ahead of depressive episodes. During emotionally triggered times, exercise can be a great way to release emotions as well.
Outdoor Exercise And Physical Activity Is Better
Like taking long walks on the beach or a jog through the park? While exercise has been scientifically proven to decrease symptoms of depression, being outdoors has been proven to drastically increase mental health and mental wellbeing. Exercising outdoors is a great way to get the best benefits of both practices for depression.
Gym Not Included
There is no law which states exercise must be conducted in a gym. Gyms can be overwhelming. Full of machines, noise, and people, it is easy to feel self-conscious and intimidated by the gym. Structured time at the gym can be great in a high energy and fun class. However, not everyone is sensitive to mental health. The extremity of exercise can include a lot of negative messaging, even shaming communication. If the gym isn’t for you, there are many other ways to exercise and have a good time doing it.
To Thine Own Self Be True
One of the worst habits to create out of exercise is feeling as though you have to exercise every day. Getting some kind of physical activity in for at least twenty minutes is highly recommended to relieve the symptoms of depression and regulate mood. However, there are days when the symptoms of depression simply cannot be reconciled with. Fatigue, exhaustion, lethargy, lack of motivation, no energy- there are just some days when depression hits hard. If you could get out of bed and exercise, you would. On such days, getting out of bed would be exercise enough. It’s okay to take care of yourself in other ways on days when exercise doesn’t seem like it is part of the plan.
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