Make no bones about it, we live in a hectic and fast-paced world where we are constantly on the go. It could be that your job requires you to work long hours or you have a household of children and pets to keep in line and looking presentable or perhaps you hold yourself to incredibly high standards. No matter the cause, stress has become a part of life for us. Adding something new to your already busy schedule may seem like a counter intuitive way to reduce stress, but making time for a spot of exercise in your weekly routine can have incredibly positive benefits to your health, plus reduce those stress levels.
How does exercise reduce stress?
Scientific studies have shown that when you get the blood flowing and your heart pumping your body can release endorphins, the happy making chemicals, which go a long way to improving your mood. The satisfaction and feel good factor of getting a spot of exercise in cannot be overestimated either. For people concerned about their weight, flexibility or general fitness committing to some regular exercise will kick those fears to the wayside and reduce stress levels even further.
Now that you have decided to give it a go what type of exercise should you try? There is certainly no shortage of options and there is nothing wrong about trying different things until you hit on the thing that makes you smile and truly look forward to throwing on your work out clothes. It is important to note that not all exercise needs to take the form of time spent in the gym or with an instructor. There are lots of exercise options that you can do in the comfort of your own home and out with the walls of a fitness and leisure facility.
Yoga and Pilates are incredibly popular options and a quick google search for either will no doubt bring up multiple options for studios and classes nearby. Both of these forms of exercise are extremely beneficial when it comes to reducing stress. Careful and considered breathing is an important part of both practices, which has its own stress busting qualities. There are also plenty of videos on YouTube that you could watch and follow along with if you prefer to exercise in your own home
CrossFit has had a surge of popularity in recent years. The team spirit element of this form of exercise is a big draw for people that find the accountability portion of the sport to be a helpful way to stay motivated. The community that forms around this type of workout is a great way to expand your friend circle and can be a truly wonderful way to help combat feelings of isolation and loneliness.
Something a little bit different
The gym and straight up fitness type classes are not for everyone. Just because you are nervous about jumping on the treadmill or lifting weights doesn’t mean there is not something out there for you. Try a dance class, ariel trapeze or geocaching that requires you to walk around outdoors in search of hidden treasure troves. Exercise is not just about the calories burned and muscles gained, it’s about feeling good and having fun so look for something that does just that. The benefit of doing something you enjoy will be that you are far more likely to keep doing it! However you choose to exercise, we wish you stress free days and a sunnier outlook.