5 exercises to naturally treat your anxiety and depression

5 exercises to naturally treat your anxiety and depression

Exercise is the ultimate wellness tool. Not only is it important for keeping our bodies healthy, but it can also do wonders for your mind. Regular exercise can help improve your mood and ease symptoms of depression and anxiety. It can also serve as an outlet for your attention and stress.

For more mental health tips, see how you can Improve your mood without therapy and how to change your diet to benefits your mental well-being.

Why should you exercise for mental health?

Exercise makes you feel good about yourself. When I say exercise, I don’t just mean going to the gym and lifting weights. Exercise is anything gets you moving. You don’t have to leave your house to boost your mental well-being with physical activity.

Benefits of exercise on your mental health:

No amount of exercise will unlock good mental health. This means you have the flexibility to find something to fit your life. There is no bar to meet, any amount of movement counts. However, the researchers note that more exercise will increase the reward.

Exercises to improve your mental health

Walking

For many people, walking is his go-to mental health exercise It’s one of my favorites because it’s relatively low impact and you can do it anywhere. Walking can help relieve stress, ease anxiety symptoms, and promote positive thinking. For the best results, take a walk outside and immerse yourself in the greenery. Nature walks have been found to reduce anxiety.

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It doesn’t have to be a long walk; studies show that just 15 minutes of walking can reduce the risk of depression by 26%.

In a hurry

If you’re looking for a more intense form of exercise for mental health, try running. Our brains are flooded with mood-boosting endorphins when we run. It’s what people call “runner’s high.” Studies have found that exercise in the fresh air is an effective treatment alternative to antidepressants.

Steady running can also make it easier to fall asleep and increase the quality of sleep, which is essential for reducing anxiety Y symptoms of depression.

read more: 5 Great Running Apps That Will Help You Achieve Your Fitness Goals

Senior couple jogging in a park

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strength training

Give strength training a try if you want the added benefit of building muscle while healing your mental health. May reduce the risk of developing depression or relieve existing symptoms. You also get the satisfaction that comes with reaching strength goals.

Strength training doesn’t have to mean going to the gym and lifting weights. You can easily build strength at home with free weights, resistance bands Y your body weight.

Yoga

Yoga not only helps your body move, but it also gives you the opportunity to reflect and meditate. That is why we believe that it is one of the best exercises you can do to boost your mental health. Focusing on your breath can remove bad mental health habits like thought loops and negative thoughts. Controlled breathing activates your parasympathetic nervous system, which puts you in a relaxed state. It does this by lowering your heart rate and blood pressure.

The parasympathetic nervous system is the counterpart of the sympathetic nervous system that controls the fight or flight response of the body. When you have anxiety, your sympathetic nervous system is activated, even if there is no danger. Yoga can help activate your parasympathetic nervous system so that it returns to homeostasis.

One of the best parts of yoga is the variety. You can choose which type you would like to do, from relaxing to more physically demanding.

Dance

Dancing is another exercise option that can significantly reduce anxiety. It can also boost self-esteem. Like yoga, you can choose the type of dance you will do; they all have benefits. If you’re not a ballet dancer, try tango or free flow movement.

You don’t need to go to a dance studio to get the benefits. You can do virtual dance classes in the comfort of your home. However, synchronized or choreographed group dancing can maximize results if you crave social interactions. Classes like Zumba have social benefits that other forms of exercise don’t. They allow you to connect with others and form friendships.

Young woman in a fitness dance class performing the moves

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Practical advice to start exercising for mental health

Getting started is the most difficult point. Here are some strategies for making exercise a staple of your routine.

  • Choose an activity you enjoy: Try not to think of exercise as something you have to do. Instead, view it as another tool you use on your wellness journey.
  • set realistic goals: Going too far with exercise can have a negative impact on your mental health, especially if you set goals that you cannot reasonably meet. Set small goals that you can build on as you grow. Remember, you have nothing to prove to anyone but yourself.
  • Reward yourself: Rewarding yourself for completing a workout is a great idea to make it a habit. It doesn’t have to be anything big, maybe an extra episode of your favorite show or a bubble bath.
  • Make it social: If you are someone who thrives when you have responsibility, make your exercise a social activity with friends.

Exercise is an excellent tool for managing everyday symptoms of mental health conditions. However, exercise is not meant to replace therapy and medication for those who depend on it to function.

The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended to be health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified healthcare provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or healthcare goals.

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