For the most part, when people exercise, they’re focusing on improving their physical health. While working out, you’re most likely thinking about all the benefits your body is reaping, but start thinking about your mind too! There are many health benefits to exercising and eating right, and your brain will thank you for it. Let’s take a look at the top 10 ways to not only improve your physical health but mental health as well.
Brought to you by the HFR team and its founder and HarperCollins author of the fitness book ReSYNC Your Life, Samir Becic
- Relieve stress!: This is number one for a reason. No matter how well you may or may not deal with it, stress is a factor in everyone’s lives. While exercising, your body is releasing “happy chemicals” in your body, called endorphins. When your body releases endorphins, it causes you to relax and feel at ease. So go ahead and tone those arms and get happy about it!
- Have as much self-confidence as Donald Trump during a press conference: If you feel good, this will radiate from your head to your toes. And when you feel good, you will perform at your best and feel positive about yourself. If you don’t have self-worth, you’ll never achieve any goals you have, health related or not. Get a quick run in before your morning coffee, and you’ll be glowing with confidence!
- Keep that brain sharp: the older we get, the more our memory and cognitive abilities slip. A way of keeping your brain on its top game is feeding it vital nutrients like proteins and veggies, and daily exercise. Working out can boost the hippocampus chemical in your brain, helping to prevent diseases like Alzheimer’s.
- Control addiction: The brain releases dopamine when you experience any sort of pleasure, which can be addicting. Battling this addiction with exercise can help distract you from those wants, and can help you focus on more important things like working out!
- Get ‘er done!: If you’re feeling blah and unmotivated, exercise may be your cure. Take a walk: it can get your blood pumping and give you more energy, get your blood pumping, and get that work done!
- Get creative: Instead of taking a shower and heading to bed after a workout, think of a new art project you can do. A good gym session can boost creativity for up to two hours after you’re done. Get on Pinterest and find your new hobby!
- Inspire others to get healthy: Not only will you feel more motivated to work out if you’re doing it with friends or family, you’ll be helping both of you get your mental and physical health on track! With a little friendly competition, both of you can achieve your best health and encourage the other to keep going.
- Improved sexual desire: With regular exercise, you can boost your libido, your emotional sexual desire. Not only that, but exercise will help increase blood flow that will directly target sexual health. Looks like you’re killing two birds with one stone here!
- You will feel accomplished: Who doesn’t feel good about themselves after running their first mile in five minutes, or finally bench pressing 150 lbs? When you accomplish goals, you’re improving your self-esteem, which will benefit you not only in the gym but in work and school as well. When you feel like you have a purpose, you can take on anything!
- Have more energy: Wouldn’t it feel nice to not feel that 3 pm slump anymore? Exercise can help boost your endurance and send oxygen and nutrients to your tissues, causing you to feel better and have more natural energy. When your body is working the way it’s supposed to, you’ll be at an energy peak!