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Day 12 - Use Exercise to Calm Your Mind

You already know that exercise is good for your body, and we've touched upon the ways it can help you to feel better, too. Getting physical has a lot of benefits for your mind. It can't be overstated how good it is for you to move your body. Allow me to focus a bit more on the benefits of exercise for calming your mind.

Amp Up Happy Brain Chemicals

Endorphins, known as the brain's happy chemicals, are released when you work out. These chemicals produce a euphoric feeling, and you can get them from even moderate exercise. Just a half hour of movement a couple days a week would be a good start. For those who are prone to depression and anxiety, exercise can sometimes produce effects similar to that of a prescription.

Lessen Anxiety

Along with feeling happier through exercise, you can also gain a sense of calm. When you're feeling anxious or amped up, a workout session might do the trick to level out your mood. People with anxiety disorders have been shown to experience symptom relief through physical exertion.

Increase Relaxation

When you're feeling too hyped to sleep, an exercise session might be what you need to promote slumber. Timing is important if improving sleep is your goal. Choose about five or six hours before your bedtime to work out. Your body's core temperature will rise due to the physical activity. Then right before bed, it should drop to a temperature that helps to promote sleep. It doesn't have to be a lot of jumping up and down. A good yoga class can do the trick.

Boost Energy

Sometimes when you're feeling sad, a quick boost in energy can help to alleviate your mood. A short stroll or quick session at the gym might just give you the shot of adrenaline and endorphins you need to get through the afternoon slump or to shake a blue mood. It can also give you the drive to be more productive and creative once you've cleared your head.

Reduce Stress

Another beneficial brain chemical released through exercise is norepinephrine, which is known to reduce the effects of stress and help you cope. This is great to know when you're already feeling stressed to the max. So, head to the gym or outside when you feel like you're about to burst. Or, turn up some of your favorite music and just dance the blues away. You'll likely feel much better afterward.

Exercise is good for your body, mind and soul. Even when you're stressed or overloaded and simply don't feel like moving, pushing yourself to get out there and workout may be the best medicine for the situation. Give it a try next time you need an outlet for the tension you're dealing with. You might be surprised by the results.

Sparkles and Love,

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About the Author




Barbara L Cummings, MS, RN

the Mindful Maven and Mistress of Meditation, is a sassy Queen-ager, mentor, confidante and trusted guide who provides people with everyday life support. 

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