It is common knowledge that exercise is good for the body. But did you know that it is also good for the mind? Over the years, mental health experts have learned more of the subject, and all signs indicate that what is good for one is also good for the other.
Exercise is now known to help reduce stress, increase a positive mindset, and boost self-esteem. To name a few of the benefits that exercise can have on the mind. The possibilities are endless.
Exercising for Mental Health
Over the years, psychologists have learned that exercise can positively affect many different forms of mental health concerns. It is now known to help depression, anxiety, stress, ADHD, PSTD, and other trauma forms.
The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that a 15-minute daily run helped reduce depression by up to 26%. Experts have likewise noted the ties between exercise and anxiety. Now there’s proof that exercise can help patients suffering from PTSD, giving their minds something both active and positive to focus on.
The ability to help all of the conditions mentioned above already makes exercise look amazing, but there is more to note on this subject. Exercise has been found to help in a variety of other ways.
For example, Ashish Sharma, Vishal Madaan, and Frederick D. Petty found that an improved exercise routine helped patients on various levels, from gaining more endurance to an enhanced mood and higher mental alertness.
Likewise, exercise helps provide a better night’s sleep. Your body will be more comfortable at rest, and studies have shown that the circadian rhythm is similarly improved. However, it is essential to note that exercise too closer to bed may have the opposite effect.
Aiming for the Positives
Given everything that experts have learned, it’s no surprise that exercise has become a prescribed treatment method. Even a little bit can go a long way, and as some would say. It’s easy to be hard on yourself in the early stages, but Ashley Good, in an article for Forbes, put it best: “things that are worth doing are worth doing poorly.” That is to say; it is better to do the bare minimum (or less) – than nothing at all.
This is an important motto to keep in mind, especially for those struggling with various mental health concerns. Sometimes those concerns will get in the way, but what is essential is that any headway – no matter how tiny – is made. To gain the mental health benefits, you don’t need to push yourself to the brink of exhaustion. Just a simple workout will do.
If signing up for a gym membership doesn’t feel ideal right now, there are plenty of alternatives out there. Something as simple as getting up and walking around your house will help (again, it is better than nothing). Going outside and taking a quick walk is another option. Another option is to hop onto YouTube (or any other video platform) and looking up a video guide or two. All are feasible, approachable, and low-cost options.