Sometimes life rushes past you. There is so much going on in the day-to-day that it often seems impossible to give yourself that much needed you time. Without it, you can start to feel frazzled, overwhelmed, and downright grumpy. Trust me – this is something I have experienced firsthand. Whenever I let work and responsibilities rule my life, it isn’t long before I feel totally and completely confined by it all. Which is why exercise has become a major part of my routine.
It also helps reduce stress. That's right....working out won’t just help you get stronger or build your endurance. It is also proven to beat stress. Feeling anxious about that pitch at work? Not sure how to break some bad new to a good friend? Leave it all behind. At least for a little while. Working out helps you forget about stresses, fears, and worries in the short term. As you focus on lifting weights, holding that plank position, and doing another rep of squats, you are able to think about the task at hand. Nothing more and nothing less.
Working out can also reduce your stress in the long term. When you work out you raise your heart rate. This then triggers changes in hormone levels. The result of this change is that you are putting your body through low levels of stress. Why is this important? The more you exercise, the more your body gets used to experiencing those low levels of stress. So, when you come across a stressful situation (like shrinking your favourite dress or forgetting your cell phone at home) your body is less likely to react negatively to stress.
Less stress? Always a good thing. There is nothing pretty about feeling unhappy or being tense day in and day out. So spend a little time on yourself – and work up a sweat! You don't have to go to a gym or spend a ton of money to get a good workout in. Check out YouTube, pick up a workout DVD, or go for a walk with a good friend.
How do you relieve stress?