Most people in the world have felt sad, depressed, or defeated at some point in their life which can be caused by numerous factors. We all know how this feels and sometimes we even refuse to get out of bed or engage in physical activities. However, forcing oneself to do just that may be the cure to feeling so defeated and unmotivated. It is common that depression leads to lethargic feelings or laziness as we tend to shut down instead of digging ourselves out of these negative feelings. Exercise has been proven to be beneficial for our mental health, as it allows the brain to feel clear and it releases healthy endorphins. People that workout regularly feel more energetic throughout the day, sleep better at night, and have more positive thoughts about themselves and their lives.
Although anti-depressants can be useful, exercise may be an even more powerful medicine because it additionally relieves stress, improves memory, and boosts your overall mood. The word exercise is used loosely here, as each person is different and are interested in different types of physical activity. For example, to some people it can mean 1-2 hours of lifting weights and extreme workouts, while for others it can simply mean walking or running for 15 minutes each day. According to the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health it was found that doing this each day can reduce the risk of major depression by 26% as well as prevent relapsing.
Exercise is also a helpful hand in battling anxiety as it can allow you to focus on the task at hand instead of becoming overwhelmed with the number of thoughts running through your head. This will eliminate any constant worries, as you focus on the actual sensation of your body such as the rhythm of breath or muscles flexing. There are many different things that exercise can be helpful with including PTSD, trauma, and ADHD as the body gains boosts of dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin during and after a workout. This helps the nervous system become released and allows you to move out of immobilization that can be caused from stress, depression, or PTSD.