Staying active makes us feel better
We know that exercise is good for our physical health. It helps us lose weight, gain energy and build muscle. Also, it is good for our mental health. Staying active can improve our mood, focus and overall well-being. Exercise can distract us from negative thought patterns and help reduce stress. Being active can increase your overall energy and daily endurance.
Consistent exercise helps us function
We can function well without regular exercise. But staying active could lower the risk of developing mental illness. When we exercise, our brains release endorphins, serotonin and stress hormones. These natural chemicals energize our well-being. Plus, they can help manage mild to moderate depression, anxiety and stress.
Exercise promotes neural growth that boosts calm feelings. It can help relieve tension in the body. Less tension in the body promotes less worry in the mind.
Other benefits of exercise include:
- Better memory and focus
- Improved sleep
- Higher sense of self-worth
- Increased sex drive
- Weight loss
- Increase in energy
- More positive feelings
- Stronger resilience and coping with challenges
Exercise can help with symptoms of ADHD, PTSD and trauma.
Get active and stay active
Getting ourselves to exercise can feel scary. What’s most important is being active every day. Physical activity is any movement that uses our muscles and energy.
Start small and build from there
Hard workouts are not the only way to be active. We each know our own limits. Before committing to a full workout, we can get active in simple ways. Being active can include:
- Doing chores like laundry and vacuuming
- Gardening and yard work
- Stretching while you watch TV
- Standing and walking around during phone calls
- Just dancing to your favorite song
Try these and find your own ways to stay active during your daily routine.
Ready to exercise
We decide when we want to start working out. The goal is to do at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise 5 days a week. That time can be broken down into two 15-minute sessions or even three 10-minute sessions. Try out these exercise routines for beginners.
When exercise becomes a habit, add more time and advanced movements. If a movement causes you discomfort, try something different. And it is OK if you need to take a break after 5 or 10 minutes.
When exercising, we can experience obstacles while trying to stay consistent. Try these helpful tips to stay motivated:
- Choose activities or exercise routines you enjoy
- Switch up your exercise routines and challenge yourself
- Set small exercise goals and reward yourself after doing them
- Schedule your workouts when your energy is highest
- Plan out your exercise in advance on a calendar or in a journal
- Exercise outdoors
- Join a local gym or community center with exercise classes
A good motivator for staying active is group exercise. Humans are social creatures. We can lean on each other to stay motivated. Additional benefits of staying connected with others are:
- Improving your mood and self-esteem
- Reducing stress and anxiety
- Increasing your lifespan
Plus, connecting with others is beneficial to our mental health.