- Exercise & mental health: How exercise benefits the mind & boosts your mood
- The mind-body connection
- Mood-boosting exercises
- Stay on track
- The Best Forms of Exercise to Release Endorphins and Improve Mood
- Some Exercise Types Are Better Than Others When It Comes To Improving Mood
- More evidence that exercise can boost mood
- Cause or effect?
- Study technique
- Identifying types of movement
- Little movements add up
- Exercise This to Instantly Boost Your Mood
- Feeling Stressed? Here Are The Top 3 Mood-Boosting Exercises to do ASAP
- #1 Bust Stress & Boost Mood With a Yoga Flow Workout
- #2 Brain Fog Have You Down? Grab Your Weights
- #3 Feeling Frustrated? Get Your Cardio Fix In
- The Number One Hack to Keep Your Mood High
- Boost Your Mood, Boost Your Health
- 7 Simple Exercises to Improve Your Mood
- How Does Exercising Improve Your Mood?
- #1. Yoga to Decrease Anxiety
- #2. Tai Chi to Reduce Stress
- #3. Pilates to Improve Sleep
- #4. Cycling to Increase Energy
- #5. Weight Lifting to Increase Clarity
- #6. Dancing to Release Endorphins
- #7. Swimming to Reduce Depression
Exercise & mental health: How exercise benefits the mind & boosts your mood
Becky Weil always prided herself on staying active. Cardio, in particular, made her feel more positive and confident about her body. But work stress during pregnancy, a difficult birth and a colicky newborn derailed the 33-year-old New Jersey mom’s regular workout routine. She went months without exercising, and as time passed, realized she no longer felt her old energetic self.
Determined to make a change, Becky started going to the gym on nights and weekends, when her husband was home to watch their baby.
Besides strengthening and toning, the regular sweat sessions also gave her a much-needed energy boost and a sense of calm. “Once I started taking care of myself, I found I had more patience,” Becky says.
“Even now, I notice a difference in my mood and overall happiness on days I go to the gym.”
The mind-body connection
Becky isn’t the only one who feels better after a workout. In fact, there’s evidence of a connection between staying active and improved mental health.
Studies show people who exercise at least two to three times a week experience significantly less depression, anger and stress than those who exercise less frequently or not at all.
And recent research even suggests that over time, regular exercise can help fend off dementia and Alzheimer’s.
Experts are still figuring out exactly why moving your muscles helps boost your mood. One possible explanation could be that aerobic exercise produces endorphins, or “feel good” chemicals.
It also increases your heart rate, which triggers norepinephrine, a chemical that may help the brain deal with stress more effectively. Plus, exercise helps to increase blood flow to the brain.
This, in turn, impacts all of your cellular functions, everything from improving concentration to regulating sleep to ultimately boosting your mood.
Your daily habits could also play a role, says Alan Schneider, MD, a board-certified psychiatrist and a medical director for Aetna Behavioral Health. “People who exercise regularly have more structured lifestyles,” he explains. “They tend to be more grounded in how they eat, sleep, exercise and maintain themselves, so their mental state tends to be better.”
Whether moderate or vigorous, consistent exercise has mood-boosting benefits for people of all skill levels.
The American Heart Association and the American College of Sports Medicine recommend doing 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity five days a week.
If that seems too much to take on, try starting out with 10- to 15-minute sessions and gradually increasing your time each week. (Always talk to your doctor before starting any fitness program.) Here are some activities to consider as you kickstart your fitness plan.
- Walking. “I encourage people to get outside as often as possible,” says Katherine Smith, a registered dietitian nutritionist and Aetna health coach. The extra steps will get your heart pumping. Plus, being out in the sunshine can improve vitamin D levels, which helps ward off depression.
- Aerobic exercise and weight training. Both types of exercise increase your heart rate and release feel-good endorphins in the brain. Try doing a combination of both, such as a Zumba class followed by a short session lifting light weights.
- Low-impact exercises. Yoga, Pilates or even gentle stretching can improve blood flow to areas that tend to hold tension. (Think your neck and shoulders.) “These exercises provide stretching and controlled breathing, which loosen muscles,” Smith explains. “And the focus on breathing in itself is a great stress reliever.”
That’s what Judy Freedman, 60, discovered several years ago when she took up yoga after the death of her husband and subsequent retirement. “I needed a physical outlet to help me manage the process of change,” she says. Not only has the regular practice improved her flexibility and balance, she says it’s also increased her memory and sense of mindfulness.
Stay on track
Motivating yourself to get up and get moving can be a challenge, especially if you’re feeling down. Here are a few tips to stay on track.
- Find an activity you enjoy. Smith suggests experimenting with different types of workouts until you find the right one for you. “If you don't it, you won't do it,” she points out.
- Go at your own pace. If you’re a fitness newbie or have been “on a break” with your workout regimen, consider taking it slowly at first. Kicking off a new routine with short intervals of activity sends positive feedback to your brain that you enjoyed the experience, so you’re more ly to keep up the habit. See more tips on how to stick to a fitness plan.
- Use tech tools. You can use a wearable device to track your steps or activity, and then challenge yourself to improve over time. Or enlist the help of a fitness app. Under Armour’s “Map My Run,” for example, tracks over 600 activities and allows you to share your workouts on social media and connect with other athletes. It’s among the curated selection of health and fitness apps found within the Aetna App Room.
- Find a workout buddy. You can hold each other accountable for sticking with the routine. Plus, regular workouts can build camaraderie and a sense of community. (Read more about social fitness here.) Blayne Smith, former executive director of Team Red White and Blue, discovered that when he returned to civilian life after the military. Exercise not only helped boost his physical and emotional health, it also provided an important social outlet. (Learn more about Blayne’s story below.)
Transcript: How Exercise Benefits the Mind & Boosts Your Mood
It can be challenging to transition from military life to civilian life.
I came back home and I felt guilty. So when I realized that things weren’t going as well as I hoped they would it was a big wakeup call for me.
I knew I had to get back to doing the things that made me who I was before I could really start feeling better. I had to force myself, in some cases to get a little bit outside my comfort zone.
I started running and exercising more and that made me feel great. When we get people together, then they can support each other. Physical activity is just a great way to do that.
Not only is exercise great for your physical, mental and emotional health, but it’s just a way for people to build meaningful connections.
I’m Blayne Smith, Executive Director at Team Red, White and Blue. And Team Red, White and Blue is making better communities through physical and social activity.
Blayne Smith is a real member who’s given us permission to use his story.
Developing an exercise regimen will not only help you feel better physically, you’ll also enjoy a sense of accomplishment—and that can motivate you to keep going.
Now that Becky’s son is in preschool, she has more time to work out, which revs up her energy and attitude. “When I’m on my way to pick up my son, I can’t wait to see him,” she says.
“I’m excited about spending the rest of my day doing things with him, feeling more positive and happier.”
Brooke Showell is a writer and editor whose health, fitness and psychology stories have appeared in Self, Health, Woman’s Day and Redbook. She’s very into the idea of fitness travel and plans to one day take her yoga practice to the beach.
The Best Forms of Exercise to Release Endorphins and Improve Mood
asiseeit / Vetta / Getty Images
Exercise can be a great way to lift your mood and improve your ability to deal with stress. When you exercise, your body often feels more relaxed and calm, but there are mental benefits, too. Find out why exercise is beneficial, and which types of exercises are best to help balance your emotions.
When you engage in high-intensity exercise, your body and brain produce hormones and neurotransmitters that have a positive impact on your mood, memory, energy levels, and sense of well-being. Some of these are known as endorphins, the body's feel-good chemicals. They can result in the “runner's high” that joggers talk about.
After a good workout, your muscles are tired, but you feel more relaxed. You may also feel a sense of accomplishment, which boosts your self-confidence and improves your sense of well-being. Thanks to your workout, the pent-up tension and stress in your muscles and your mind are reduced.
While exercise is not, on its own, a treatment for clinical depression, studies show that even a single b exercise results in positive changes in brain chemicals and can improve your mood. A 2017 review on the effects of exercise published in the journal Brain Plasticity, found that after exercise, people reported a better mood with decreases in tension, depression, and anger.
In fact, for people with mild or moderate depression, 30 minutes of daily exercise may be effective for improving mood. A review study that looked at 23 randomized controlled studies found combining exercise with conventional medication and cognitive behavioral therapy treatment for depression reduced depression symptoms even more.
More exercise isn't necessarily going to make you happier, and as with anything, it's possible to overdo it. For example, one of the benefits of exercise is that it stimulates cortisol production, which can help with memory and alertness. On the other hand, too much cortisol can have negative effects on your body and for your mood.
When it comes to exercise, it's crucial that you pick something you enjoy. Cardiovascular exercise is great, but if you hate swimming or running, you won't stick with it. And when an activity is more enjoyable, chances are better for long-term adherence.
For your exercise routine, you might try a mix of solitary activities walking, swimming, or gardening, combined with some group activities high-intensity interval training classes or periodic group hikes or bike rides. In addition to the physical and endorphin benefits of exercise, another potential benefit of exercise is the opportunity for social interaction, which can often boost your mood just as much.
The best type of exercise to improve your mood is often a mix of activities you enjoy and are motivated to stick with for the long term.
For mood-lifting benefits, try any or all of the following activities. Some people get bored with the same exercise day after day; others relish the routine.
Consider keeping the exercises you love as your anchor workouts, and then periodically swapping in other activities as your mood, schedule, or weather changes.
For group classes, keep your eye open for seasonal discounts or coupon offers.
Cardiovascular and aerobic exercises are great for creating the intensity required for the release of mood-raising endorphins in your body.
Aerobic exercises are those that get your heart rate up, jogging, swimming, cycling, brisk walking, or using an elliptical trainer.
You can also get your heart rate up by doing activities gardening and dancing—both have been shown to reduce depression and anxiety.
If you sports, joining a local league to play soccer, basketball, or tennis can provide social interaction while giving you a cardiovascular workout. Joining a group class that provides a high-intensity interval workout Crossfit or boxing is another way to get your cardio in while having some fun with friends.
Yoga is a system of holistic health and spiritual growth which focuses on meditation, breathing exercises, and physical postures. Unless you're doing an active flow or vinyasa yoga class, yoga doesn't provide much of an aerobic workout.
It can, however, teach you how to relax, release tension, stretch tight muscles, and even strengthen weak ones. Doing yoga regularly can help to ease anxiety and improve feelings of well-being.
A 2016 review on the use of yoga for anxiety and depression found that the practice is beneficial for reducing anxiety, depression, and symptoms associated with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
A traditional Chinese exercise that is practiced worldwide, Tai Chi can benefit people who experience symptoms of anxiety and depression, and it has been shown to improve immune function as well as to increase the blood levels of feel-good endorphins.
Anyone can do Tai Chi because the movements are easily learned and repetitive. It doesn't require strength or endurance but instead focuses on the form of the movements and breathing. Tai Chi is considered a self-healing practice.
According to traditional Chinese medicine, the practice helps to alleviate energy blockages in the body, which helps to prevent or treat certain diseases. Research shows that Tai Chi may improve many aspects of well-being including reducing depression, anxiety, stress.
and mood disturbance as well as improving self-esteem.
There are so many benefits of exercise, which is why the Department of Health and Human Services recommends at least 150 minutes each week of moderate-intensity cardio exercise plus two days of strength training exercise for all adults. While exercise can help to improve your mood, if you deal with severe depression or anxiety, always consult your doctor.
Some Exercise Types Are Better Than Others When It Comes To Improving Mood
It's long been thought that exercise can make you feel better, both physically and mentally, with quite a bit of research showing a beneficial effect on depression.
Now, one of the largest studies of its kind confirms that just about any exercise can help improve your mood compared with doing nothing at all, and some types may be more effective than others.
Overall, people reported having an average of 3.5 days of poor mental health in any given month, according to the report published in the Lancet Psychiatry.
Just about any exercise — including walking or housework — helped reduce that number by an average of 1.5 days a month, or 43%. Team sports, cycling, and aerobic and gym exercises had the biggest effect, reducing poor mental health days by about 20%. Walking, on the other hand, was linked to a 10% reduction.
People who worked out for 30 to 60 minutes at a time, three to five days a week, seemed to get the most benefits, compared with those who exercised either less or more. In fact, people who exercised 23 times a month, or for longer than 90 minutes per session, had worse mental health than those who exercised less often or for shorter periods of time, the authors noted.
Overall, 45 minutes was better than less time, and there was no benefit in working out more than an hour.
“It's not everyone has to go and run a marathon, and actually running wasn’t even the most effective,” the study's senior investigator, Adam Chekroud, told BuzzFeed News. “Things yoga, things walking, even household chores, seemed to have some benefit over doing nothing at all.”
The effect was stronger for people who said they had been diagnosed with depression. Among that group, those who exercised reported 7.1 days a month during which their mental health was “not good,” compared with 10.9 days reported by those who did not exercise.
Chekroud, an assistant professor of psychiatry at Yale University, and his colleagues analyzed data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Behavioral Risk Factors Surveillance System, a big telephone survey that's conducted each year. In this case, the surveys were from 2011, 2013, and 2015.
So team sports were supposedly the number one best way to reduce the number of days people felt bad every month. But that could be due to factors other than just the exercise itself, Chekroud said.
“If the benefit of team sports was just the running, then we should see that team sports and running have the same impact on mental health — but they don’t,” Chekroud said. “It seems there is this additional benefit.”
The structure and social interaction of team sports — if they are your thing —might offer additional mental health benefits that the activity of exercise may not give you, he said.
Exercise is probably good for your mood for a number of reasons, Chekroud said. One is neurobiological, with some research suggesting that exercise can boost brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) — a nerve growth factor that may play a role in mood — and other compounds.
Exercise can also be about social interaction and “putting structure into your life — it’s probably making you tired, it’s probably making you sleep better, and so it’s a pretty holistic approach for tackling a number of different things,” he said.
Of course, people who feel good may be more ly to exercise, so it can be difficult from this type of study to determine which came first — the good mood or the exercise.
However, past randomized controlled studies, in which some people are assigned to exercise and others are not, do suggest that starting to work out can actually improve mood.
And of course, exercise is not going to work for everyone all of the time. Mental health is complicated, and lots of different factors can affect any given person's mood on any given day — including financial and societal factors outside their control.
Exercise is “an important tool that we have for improving mental health, but it’s by no means the only one,” Chekroud said. “I would encourage people to seek out the opinion of a doctor and make sure you are thinking about things medication, counseling, and psychotherapy.”
Chekroud is also the cofounder of Spring Health, a platform he is marketing to corporations to help improve employee mental health.
Several of the study's co-authors are advisers to Spring Health, and Microsoft, which provided the computing resources for the study, is an investor in the platform.
The funding agencies were not involved in the data analysis and publication of the results, Chekroud said.
More evidence that exercise can boost mood
Harvard Women's Health Watch
It may be possible to outrun depression, according to a study published online January 23 by JAMA Psychiatry.
“We saw a 26% decrease in odds for becoming depressed for each major increase in objectively measured physical activity,” says study author Karmel Choi, a clinical and research fellow at the Harvard T.H.
Chan School of Public Health.
“This increase in physical activity is what you might see on your activity tracker if you replaced 15 minutes of sitting with 15 minutes of running, or one hour of sitting with one hour of moderate activity brisk walking.”
Cause or effect?
This isn't the first study to show that exercise may benefit mood. But until now it's largely been something of a chicken-and-egg discussion — which came first?
“We hear a lot that exercise and mood are connected. What we don't know for sure is whether being physically active can improve emotional well-being, or if we simply move less when we feel sad or depressed,” says Choi.
This study aimed to find out. “We wanted to see if there might be a causal connection, in either direction, between physical activity and depression,” says Choi. “Does physical activity protect against depression? Or does depression simply reduce physical activity? Our study allowed us to untangle those questions in a powerful new way using genetic data.”
To do this, the study applied a technique known as Mendelian randomization, using data from two large genetic databases that included hundreds of thousands of people.
Having access to genetic data allowed researchers to use genetic variations between people as a kind of natural experiment to better see how exercise affects depression, and vice versa, says Choi.
What they found is that exercise was able to independently reduce the risk for depression.
People who moved more, they found, had a significantly lower risk for major depressive disorder — but only when the exercise was measured objectively using a tracking device, not when people self-reported how much exercise they performed.
Identifying types of movement
People are not always accurate when it comes to assessing or keeping track of how much they're truly moving.
“We see in the research literature that objective and self-reported measures of physical activity don't always line up,” says Choi.
“Objective measures offer unique perks because they don't rely on people's memory and are not affected by people wanting to present themselves in a certain way.”
In addition, the tracking device was better at assessing overall movement. It didn't just give people credit for formal exercise. It also measured how much they moved throughout the day during ordinary activities.
“This can include taking the stairs or walking to the store or putting away laundry, things that people may not recognize as being active but may add up,” says Choi. This is good news, because it means you don't need to be huffing and puffing on a stair machine to reduce your risk of depression.
Little movements add up
“What our study would say is that any kind of movement can add up to keep depression at bay. I think that's why our study findings were especially appealing. It didn't say you have to run a marathon, do hours of aerobics, or be a CrossFit master just to see benefits on depression,” says Choi.
So, the message is this: If you do love a good, hearty gym workout, keep going. But if you don't, just getting off the couch and moving for a little while can help. Ideally, to prevent depression you should do at least 15 minutes a day of higher-intensity exercise, such as running, or at least an hour of lower-intensity exercise, such as walking or housework.
“Intentionally moving your body in more gentle ways throughout the day — walking, stretching, taking the stairs, doing the dishes — can still add up in good ways for your mood. I think that's an encouraging message,” says Choi.
Image: © kali9/Getty Images
As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.
Exercise This to Instantly Boost Your Mood
Let’s face it—we all could use help in the mood-boosting department from time to time (some days more than others.) Life gets crazy, we get stressed, and our overall mood suffers. The good news? We have the info you’ll want on the best mood-boosting exercises to instantly get you that bad mood funk.
Want to know exactly how to exercise to instantly boost your mood?
Here’s what you need to know.
Feeling Stressed? Here Are The Top 3 Mood-Boosting Exercises to do ASAP
If you’re feeling stressed and irritable, we want you to know exactly what type of exercise to do to really fill your cup and get the best bang for your buck. There’s no sense in doing any old workout if you don’t walk away in a better mood, right?
So, if you need an instant mood boost, you’re going to want to do one of these three mood-boosting exercises asap. Not only will you walk away feeling that much more positive, but you’ll be working towards your fitness goals at the same time (heck, yes!)
#1 Bust Stress & Boost Mood With a Yoga Flow Workout
Feeling stressed? Grab your yoga mat, and make yoga your new BFF and favorite mood-boosting exercise to get your mind and body centered.
Yoga is such an amazing form of exercise that really helps you relax and also helps stretch out those tired and sore muscles at the same time.
Studies have even found that yoga may help reduce feelings of anxiety and depression. So, if you’re feeling tense, get your yoga flow on, and pick your favorite yoga workout on the FitOn app for a free, guided workout to help boost your mood and help you feel your best.
Hack: Try getting into a regular yoga routine. The more you keep up with it, the more you can really maximize those benefits! Aim for at least a few times per week, and if you can manage a quick yoga flow each morning, you may be surprised at what it can do for your mood and health.
#2 Brain Fog Have You Down? Grab Your Weights
If you feel you just can’t focus and are feeling totally overwhelmed, pause and grab some weights. A study found that lifting weights may, in fact, improve cognitive function.
So, while you’re lifting those dumbbells and working on those sexy bis and tris, you may also walk away feeling a bit more focused and not so cranky as you power through the rest of your day.
#3 Feeling Frustrated? Get Your Cardio Fix In
We can’t talk about mood-boosting exercises without talking about cardio. Cardio junkies can totally relate to that runners high they get after a good run or cardio sesh. All the endorphins that are released after a sweat-dripping workout is enough for anyone to want to commit to a more regular cardio workout routine.
If you find yourself needing to clear your head and improve your mood, consider some cardio. Even a HIIT or Tabata workout is a great way to combat stress, and you’ll ly feel ten times better after your workout.
Not overly excited about the idea of cardio, but want to see what it can do for you? Try this walking to running plan that may just make a cardio junkie you!
The Number One Hack to Keep Your Mood High
Now that you know about the best mood-boosting exercises, there’s something else you can do to help prevent yourself from getting totally frazzled in the first place. It all comes down to exercise timing.
Starting your day with a good sweat sesh is an amazing way to support a better overall mood to help you kick butt all day long. Why? Because exercise helps your brain make more endorphins, which are those feel-good neurotransmitters that come on strong after a good workout.
So, it only makes sense that getting a workout in before starting your day is a surefire way to keep your mood high even as you face your daily chaotic schedule.
Don’t have time for a long AM workout? No sweat—a quick HIIT FitOn workout will be plenty to get your mind and body ready for a productive and positive day.
Oh, and need some motivation to actually get your booty up and ready to get your workout in? Check out these 5 hacks to motivate yourself to get that morning sweat sesh in.
Boost Your Mood, Boost Your Health
One of the greatest things about adding fitness into your day-to-day life is that not only will it ly boost your mood, but exercising on the reg may just happen to boost your health as well.
Next time you’re feeling stressed, frustrated, or just downright irritable, take just 20-30 minutes to take care of you and get a good sweat in.
Use one of these mood-boosting exercises to go from feeling blah to boss, because you’re just one workout away from a better mood.
7 Simple Exercises to Improve Your Mood
If you’re wondering how you can naturally boost your mood and increase your energy, the answer may be to get moving. Studies have shown that exercise improves not only mental health but it can also promote relaxation.1 Even better–you don’t need to be a professional athlete or exercise-pro to reap the benefits.
Wondering what simple activities can help you feel great? We’ve rounded up 7 exercises that may help lift your spirits and explain how each exercise improves mood differently.
How Does Exercising Improve Your Mood?
Regular exercise may give you a mood boost and improve the symptoms of depression and anxiety.2 When you break a sweat, your body releases feel-good chemicals called endorphins that enhance your sense of well-being. Getting active can also take your mind off of worries and help to relieve stress.3
What’s more, exercise may also help improve self-confidence.4 Along with boosted positive body image, there have also been findings of increased self-esteem.4 And the benefits of exercise don’t stop there, by breaking a sweat on a regular basis it allows you the chance to meet new people and socialize with friends.
Getting active is a great outlet to work out any stress you may be experiencing and can help with depression.5
Once you get into the routine of working out, whether a daily walk or workout class, you’ll ly start to notice a difference in how you feel – for the better.
Read on as we explore 7 different types of activities and the benefits of each.
#1. Yoga to Decrease Anxiety
The benefits of yoga go beyond increasing your flexibility – it may also help reduce anxiety.6
A study analyzed the anxiety levels of people who practiced yoga for at least one hour, three times a week.
The results revealed that yoga is associated with increased levels of GABA (gamma-aminobutyric), which is an amino acid and neurotransmitter that can help decrease anxiety.
7 One of the reasons could be due to the slow, deep breathing that is so vital to the practice. If you’re not up for an entire yoga class, even simple stretches along with mindful breathing could be beneficial.
#2. Tai Chi to Reduce Stress
Yoga isn’t the only stress-buster on the block. The ancient Chinese martial art of Tai Chi may also help you stress less.8
Tai Chi involves standing and shifting your weight back and forth while engaging the muscles in your lower and upper body and breathing rhythmically. Multiple studies have found that the slow and fluid movements help your muscles and mind relax.9 Think of it as meditation in motion. As an added benefit, Tai Chi can also help improve your balance, flexibility and strength.10
#3. Pilates to Improve Sleep
Not being able to sleep can be frustrating, but Pilates may be able to help your mind unwind.11
Pilates is a series of strengthening exercises to help improve physical strength and mental awareness. A study performed by Appalachian State University found that Pilates can do more than tone your body. Participants who did Pilates on a mat for at least 150 minutes a week were less ly to have sleep issues.12
#4. Cycling to Increase Energy
You don’t need to enter the Tour de France–research shows that even short rides on a bicycle may be beneficial!13
One study found that just a single 30-minute ride on a stationary bike boosted the energy levels of participants.14 The study’s authors also recorded positive electrical changes in the participants’ brains that were related to energy. Although we often think of physical activity as being tiring, you may feel a little more energized after a workout session.
#5. Weight Lifting to Increase Clarity
It turns out that pumping iron can not only tone your body, it may also boost your mind.15
You don’t have to curl heavy dumbbells to reap the benefits of weightlifting. A study of older adults found that performing low-intensity, weight-training exercises three to five times a week for a month, improved the participants’ cognitive function.15 The cognitive tests showed an improvement in executive function, which includes planning, behavior regulation and multitasking.
#6. Dancing to Release Endorphins
If you love dancing for fun, we have good news: not only can it raise your heart rate16 which helps burn calories, but multiple studies have shown music may offer a healthy escape for your mind.17
Much a runner’s high, the rhythmic movement of dancing releases endorphins that may boost your mood. Put on some music, dance away, and see for yourself!
#7. Swimming to Reduce Depression
Looking for a mood-boosting exercise that is low-impact? Consider swimming which can improve your mental and physical health.18
The results of one study found that swimming had the same effect on rats as an antidepressant.19 Because swimming uses special breathing techniques and repetitive strokes, it can be meditative and potentially reduce tension.
By incorporating one or more of these exercises into your daily routine, you may boost your mood and even bring you closer to your weight loss and fitness goals.
Are you looking for a weight loss program that can help you with your eating habits as well as give you guidance on physical activity? Book your free appointment with Jenny Craig to start your weight loss journey today.
Edited June 1, 2018 by Elisa – Jenny Craig