4 Ways Exercise Reduces Stress and Improves Mood

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There are many ways to exercise: walking, jogging, bicycling, lifting weights and others. The point is to exercise and to enjoy the benefits. When you exercise, you begin to feel healthier which leads to wanting to have a healthy food plan. Remember that when you start to exercise, take it slow and gradually increase and alternate the types of exercise so that you use all of your body/muscle groups.

From a change in brain biochemistry to an increase in self-confidence, regular exercise impacts the mind as much as the body. Here are 4 ways your workout reduces stress and improves your mood.

Happiness hormones
Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that improves mood, and its function is increased when you exercise. Physical activity also stimulates the release of endorphins, hormones that reduce feelings of pain and increase feelings of pleasure. Due to its power to increase these pleasure hormones, regular exercise is considered an effective treatment for mild to moderate depression.

Improved sleep
According to Dr. Virgil Wooten, a sleep medicine expert, 20 - 30 minutes of aerobic exercise will increase your body temperature for 4 to 5 hours, but it will then drop to a lower level than if you hadn’t exercised. This drop in temperature promotes restful sleep, which can improve your mood and reduce stress.

Alone time
With so much emphasis placed on the necessity of a workout partner for motivation, the benefits of exercising alone are often overlooked. Taking a break from conversation allows you to reflect and organize your thoughts. A quiet workout reduces stress and leaves you feeling mentally refreshed.

Sense of accomplishment
The way you feel after reaching your goal weight or finishing a 10K run improves your self-esteem and gives you a more positive outlook. Your sense of accomplishment increases self-efficacy, which is the belief in your ability to accomplish a task. As your self-esteem and self-efficacy build, your positive view of exercise, and the motivation to stick with it, will improve.