How can exercise make you happy?
We’ve all heard that exercise gives you a high due to the endorphins released while you work out, but did you know that frequent exercise helps to keep you happy and fights depression?
Staying active and being healthy can help affect your mental state as well as physical wellbeing, so it is worth getting into a routine.
If you don’t believe us, read on to find out exactly how exercise can make you happy.
Your body releases chemicals
When your body is stressed, it releases chemicals into the brain in reaction to the feeling. This happens when you are working out because you are putting strain on your body and getting it sweating.
In reaction to this, your body releases Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BRNF), which is a chemical that loads your brain up with endorphins. These are designed to protect your body by minimising pain, but they also trigger a happy feeling.
This will leave you feeling light and in a good mood after your workout. The more you exercise, the more you get to enjoy this result.
Higher energy levels
You may think that more exercise will tire you out, but it is actually the opposite. Working out will help to boost your energy levels, which is why many people choose to hit the gym in the morning or run to work.
The more you exercise, the more energy you’ll have. Not only will this help you to focus, which could be great at work, it will also reduce fatigue. Feeling tired can really impact your mood in a negative way, so it makes sense that extra energy will help you feel happier – especially if you keep up your routine.
It is easier to fall asleep
Sleep is important for both the mind and body and you’ll find that when you exercise, you fall asleep faster. You’ll also enjoy a better quality of sleep, leaving you feeling rested when you wake up rather than groggy.
Better sleep is triggered by body temperature, which increases when you workout and then drops when you head to bed, signalling to your brain that it is time to shut down. Mentally, this will leave you ready to face the day and in a much better mood than catching only a few hours or experiencing interrupted sleep.
Those who suffer from depression may find that exercise helps them to keep it at bay. Even a short or low impact exercise can help to release beneficial chemicals in your body and reduce damaging ones that can build up.
While it may not be a sure-fire cure, it could help you start to experience better moods over time. This means that going for a walk, swim or yoga session regularly could help as part of your depression treatment, especially if the condition leaves you feeling fatigued.
Makes you feel better about yourself
No matter why you’re exercising – whether it’s to lose weight, get toned or simply to stay healthy – doing so regularly can help you feel good about yourself. Increasing your self-esteem can impact your mental wellbeing in a positive way.
Even if you don’t see drastic changes to your body, you’ll still have those endorphins boosting your mood and helping you to see the good in even small achievements. This will allow you to appreciate a decrease in your running time or an increase in how much you can lift even if the change is small to start with.
With all of these benefits, it makes sense to get to the gym and enjoy the difference exercise will make to your mood.