You are in a cramped room with papers on the floor, boxes, and bags surrounding you. You push away the small chair to make room so you can sit on the floor to try and listen to an audio book that won’t seem to come out of the cramped box and your mind is still on those funerals you attended the last couple weeks and that fight you had with your husband and don’t forget all the things you need to do before your teenager has to leave for a trip in two days. Sigh. Somewhere in there, we are also supposed to cook, shop, clean and complete work projects. Then the final straw comes crashing down. The spinning wheel of death on your computer not loading the page you need.
INSERT MENTAL PICTURE OF WOMAN PULLING OUT HER HAIR OR STEAM COMING OFF OF HER HEAD.
Ever notice when you are frustrated you automatically want to punch something or just start running? It is our bodies way of providing a coping mechanism and seeking out something that will give us a fix of endorphins. Anxiety and Depression Association of America states that “Exercise and other physical activity produce endorphins—chemicals in the brain that act as natural painkillers—and also improve the ability to sleep, which in turn reduces stress.”
In these moments, we feel like everything hits us at once when it comes to stress, anxiety and overall frustrations with life. But the truth is, if we dig a little deeper, or pause we may find there is source causing all these problems. We may be lacking the proper exercise or nutrition needed for our body. We may be experiencing a lack of confidence in ourselves or are lonely. But who has time to pause and exercise our mind and body? Well once you see that exercise can help battle all these you may change your mind.
So why do we want to flee, punch something or just jump up and down when we are frustrated, confused or lonely? Well, research tells us that exercise may be the missing link to help with all of these elements. There are millions of articles out there on the benefits of exercise but I wanted to share a few unique outcomes.
- Encourages Social Interaction
- Individuals who engage in exercise, whether running in the park or going to work out at the gym, have an opportunity to meet people who have a similar interest to them. Talking with others may help you to improve your mood and decrease your stress levels by simply becoming more socially involved.
- Resilience To Stress
- That’s right, research suggests that physical activity may be linked to lower physiological reactivity toward stress. Simply put, those who get more exercise may become less affected by the stress they face.
- Improved Memory
- Increased levels of physical exercise can result in improved memory.
- It Helps Your Gut (and I don’t mean just the size of it)
- Exercise in your early years will create an environment with better balance between the microorganisms that live in your intestines.
- Fights Wrinkles
- Exercise can keep skin looking younger, and may even reverse the effects of aging in people who start working out later in life.
What are some unique outcomes of exercise for you? For me, this Saturday I am going to be running a 5K race Race To Freedom. The outcome: a healthier, less stressed me and more importantly a good cause to raise awareness and help survivors of human sex trafficking.
Enjoyed reading my posts?