From weight loss to physical disease prevention, we turn to exercise as a healthy and productive way to improve and strengthen our bodies and stamina. But how often do you consider the contribution of physical exercise to your mental health? Being fit has proven very beneficial for fighting depression, stress and anxiety, improving self-confidence, and even having a positive influence on learning and intelligence.
Exercise Your Way to Mental Wellness
Why do fitness enthusiasts and sports players always seem so motivated and hungry for more? It’s because working out regularly basically works as a natural medication for depression, stress, and anxiety. The best thing is that when you trigger the chain reaction of self-care and regular exercising, it only gets better and more enjoyable.
Exercise releases the mood hormones, endorphin, and enkephalins, which stop mood swings, help with restlessness, fatigue, tiredness, so it boosts self-esteem and brings vigor and joy to life. What’s more, the more relaxed and calm you are, the quicker you’ll make progress.
Positive Thinking and Boosting Self-Confidence
We forget that the physical benefits of fitness greatly influence the overall body and mind wellness and help in having a more positive self-perception. When you put some conscious thought into maintaining a healthy weight or starting weight loss, let alone take the right action, you immediately show that you care. This is very important since our self-confidence dramatically depends on the way we think of ourselves and how much we like what’s in the mirror.
By improving the condition of our bodies – becoming stable, agile, fit, in shape and healthy, a chain of other positive changes is created – if you are satisfied with how you look and feel, you will project a more positive attitude into other areas of your life, build your self-confidence, motivation and regain love for life in general.
Hitting the gym is always the right choice when you want to work on a positive self-image. Weight lifting, or group training like CrossFit, Pilates, yoga, etc. are there to help you see immediate progress and change in your body shape and size.
Is there a better motivation booster than tangible proof that your hard work is paying off? It’s also vital to acknowledge success and congratulate yourself on making positive changes in your lifestyle. Find ways to celebrate small accomplishments, try out compression shirts and other fitness gear that accentuates your muscle definition and makes you feel good about yourself and remind you of what you have achieved. Although it may seem silly, self-encouragement is crucial for staying motivated and on the right track.
Group Sports and Their Psychological Benefits
Researchers point out that social, team sports, like football, basketball, hockey, volleyball, and more are better for enhancing life expectancy than solo sports. The social aspect of playing sports is also essential for building self-esteem, confidence, and self-worth.
Depending on someone and being important to others creates a sense of acceptance and belonging to a community. If played safely and fair, team sports can be a fantastic way of bonding and getting closer to people you may not have the opportunity to truly meet in other circumstances, like your colleagues or acquaintances.
An essential aspect of playing team sports is safety and comfort since group sports can sometimes get rough and dangerous. There are websites like Bat Critic and others which provide useful insight into what’s needed and required in terms of proper sports gear and equipment.
Boost Your Memory and Keep Your Brain Young
The part of the brain that responds strongly to aerobic exercise (cardio) is the hippocampus. Studies were done on the topic clearly show that this brain structure grows as people get fitter. Since the hippocampus is at the core of the brain’s learning and memory systems, this finding partly explains the memory-boosting effects of improved cardiovascular fitness. Slow to medium intense physical activity, like running, jogging, hiking, and swimming is a great example of an exercise that will help you sharpen your memory.
Fitness and Intelligence
A good workout won’t exactly turn you into Einstein, but it can optimize your brain for learning better and faster. Physical activity, especially cardio exercising, boosts the flow of blood to the part of the brain that is responsible for memory and learning, promoting the production of new brain cells.
This can prove very useful for young people who take up sports at a young age. Not only is it beneficial for improving learning ability, but also for gaining a sense of discipline, dedication, and perseverance, which is very much connected to success in other areas of life.
Next time you feel grumpy, sad, and just miserable – try moving, just for a little bit. Make a firm decision and find your will power to help yourself be a healthier person in any possible way.
There are no wrong sides to exercising, keep that in mind. Working on your body and mental health goes hand in hand, so whatever works for your muscles, works for your brain cells as well. Incorporating physical activity into your everyday habits is a massive step towards a healthy and young brain.