Depression And Anxiety: Getting Maximum Benefit From Physical Exercise

January 11, 2017

Research has shown that daily workouts and exercising can help ease the symptoms of depression and anxiety. Exercising is really beneficial for moderate to mild cases of anxiety.

It may be noted that exercising is not a cure for depression and anxiety. Sufferers will still need to work regularly around a CBT based program that will challenge their current internal patterns of thought. However, the psychological and physical advantages of daily workouts can definitely help alleviate the associated symptoms and thus improve the overall quality of life.

Relationship between anxiety and workouts

Workouts can help reduce the heart rate. It is known that exercise can increase the heart rate, but with passage of time and improvement in physical fitness, the heart begins working more capably thereby lowering the resting rate of the heart between workouts. Such improved functioning of the heart and consequently the lungs, leads to a generalized feeling of well-being, which can then result in lowering/easing of anxiety and depression symptoms.

One can improve the fitness and subsequently the sense of well-being with even 10 to 15 minutes of workouts per day, every day.

It may also be noted that exercising can also act as a preventive measure for depression and anxiety. Research has shown that people who exercised on a regular basis were less prone to depression and other forms of anxiety disorders.

Concentration levels and intellectual clarity, which are often adversely affected by anxiety, tend to improve after doing regular aerobic workouts. The chemicals which get released by various glands into the brain, during and after workouts, help enhance the ability to cope with and overcome stressful situations. This can thus eventually reduce the vulnerability to depression and anxiety.

Different kinds of workouts to manage anxiety

Almost all kinds of workouts can help reduce the symptoms of depression and anxiety. However, aerobic workouts tend to be most effective in management of anxiety.

Sufferers may go for brisk walking, jogging, running, swimming, or biking. You can also play tennis or go for dance classes. The best time to do these aerobic exercises is in the morning as it can help prepare the body and mind for the rest of the day. You may also opt for swimming or dancing in the evenings so as to relax after a hectic day. Dancing is a great option as it provides the option of socializing which can contribute immensely towards alleviation of depression and anxiety.

Yoga may not be an aerobic exercise, but it involves a unique combination of breathing exercises, relaxation techniques, physical motion, and meditation. All of which play a vital role in reducing depression and anxiety as well as in calming the mind.

Take a hike in the woods.

Nature tends to have a soothing effect on the mood and mind. Also, hiking is a physical activity, which will further help alleviate anxiety. It may be noted that workouts like weight training, etc. are good for the general health of the body. However, such exercises are not as beneficial as aerobic workouts or yoga.

Workouts tend to relax the body as well as the mind. Intense workouts can also be tiring. This in turn can help improve the sleeping patterns. Better sleep is beneficial for reducing depression and anxiety. If you’re ready to stop playing the victim and start living your life, these suggestions will get you on the right track towards desensitizing yourself from your fears and anxieties.

Read To Look Your Fears In The Eye And Begin Eliminating Health Anxiety From Your Life Starting Today? Learn More About A Proven CBT Based Approach Here.

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6 comments on “Depression And Anxiety: Getting Maximum Benefit From Physical Exercise

  1. Avatar Linda Jan 11, 2017

    Thank you…..I have to get back to walking……..if nothing else it gets me out of the house.😀

  2. Love this! Exercise and eating well have been a significant part of my recovery from anxiety!

  3. It’s interesting that concentration is better after some kind of physical workout. This definitely seems like it would be a good anxiety help because it would pull the thoughts off of what is stressing you and allow you to focus on other things. I think that really that’s what anxiety is, focusing too much on a problem that you feel is beyond your ability to solve. If you can just stop focusing on it I would imagine that it would be much easier to conquer.

    • Definitely Kylie. Also it’s much easier to replace a thought, a behaviour, a habit than to try and get rid of it. I started to slowly use exercise as a sign that my health was in fact in tact, and my symptoms of anxiety weren’t going to harm me physically (my health anxiety life).

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