Working out is about more than looking good...
Nobody understands that better than our certified fitness instructor and Personal Trainer, Erica Gold-Spink. As a former therapist with a Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology, Erica knows the important role that exercise plays in mental health. Read on to hear what she has to say and then…
Reduces stress and anxiety
Within five minutes of moderate exercise, most participants report a mood enhancing effect. Exercise also gives you a focused activity that can serve as a distraction from your every day stressors and give you a sense of accomplishment. Group exercise even has the added benefit of a social environment, creating a sense of camaraderie and accountability. Numerous studies have shown that the effects of physical activity extend beyond the short term. In fact, regular exercise can be just as effective as anti-depressants in treating mild to moderate depression.
Exercise releases our body’s natural hormones: endorphins. The increased levels contribute to a feeling of euphoria commonly referred to as a “runner’s high.” Exercise also helps you get a better night’s sleep by helping to regulate your body’s circadian rhythms, allowing you to feel more refreshed during the day. Both quantity and quality of sleep is improved by engaging in fitness activities during the day.
Boosts brain power
Studies have shown that cardio exercises aid in a process called neurogenesis – the creation of new brain cells. Neurogenesis improves overall brain performance, and prevents cognitive decline and memory loss. Physical activity can also boost creativity and mental energy. The same hormones that make you feel better also help you to concentrate and feel mentally sharp.