Thank you Palmer Lake Recovery Village for sponsoring this post. As always opinions and thoughts are my own.
So let’s get uncomfortable for a minute shall we and talk about mental health. Anxiety affects 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older and it’s not uncommon for someone with an anxiety disorder to also suffer from depression or the other way round. I am one of those people who have suffered from anxiety (social anxiety to be more specific) and depression.
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There are so many things that can happen in our lives that can trigger these disorders. It can be due to something like losing a job or dealing with a loss of a loved one. Life comes with stress, that’s normal but it’s the way you handle it that makes a difference. I’m not an expert on anxiety and depression but I can speak about what has helped me through my battle with depression and social anxiety.
Exercises has been the key player in breaking me free of these mental illnesses. Working out and breaking a sweat is ALWAYS good for mental wellness and boost endorphin, that feel good hormone.
Exercises to Relieve Anxiety and Depression
NO. 1 YOGA
Yoga is my number one for dealing with sadness, stress, and anxiety. It’s so calming and really helps you focus on your inner self. I’ve noticed an instant mood change after doing a session of yoga. My favorite way to do yoga without going to studios is Yogadownload.com. It’s only $10 a month and you can do yoga wherever and whenever.
NO. 2 RUNNING
I have a love hate relationship with running but no matter how short or long the run I always feel 100% better than when I started. It’s mostly due to those endorphins that are being released to give you that euphoric feeling. I try to incorporate at least 2 runs a week into my schedule.
Set small goals and build up from there. If you can run long or far, try 10 mins or mix in walking for some interval training.
NO. 3 HIKING
This is my favorite to do when I can get out of town or have time on the weekends. Hiking. Hiking is seriously good for the soul! You’re in nature, away from the pace of life, and getting a workout that is far more enjoyable than most. This study even showed that being out in nature can improve mental well being.
Grab a friend this weekend if you’re feeling down in the dumps and go explore.
NO. 4 DANCING
Ok I have tested this out and it works, for me! I love dancing. I must have got that from mom because she loved to dance too.
So one day I was at home alone, missing my mom terribly and Andrew was gone for a week. So my depression was getting the best of me. I thought to myself “I’m going to try dancing with myself.” Serious David Bowie feels ?. So I put on some fun dancing music and I was off like a horse at a racetrack.
It felt stupid at first but man did it put me in a better mood. My spirit was uplifted to another level I tell you. So give dancing with yourself a go or grab a friend for a night out dancing. Just dance and if you think you can’t dance, take some lessons and learn. Try something new.
NO. 5 LIFTING WEIGHTS
This has been something new that I’ve been testing out and I’m really enjoying it. It gives me something to focus on and something that challenges me. The thing with depression and anxiety is that you need things to keep your mind busy. This study found that regular weight training can reduce symptoms of both anxiety and depression. So it’s worth a try.
Any exercise is worth doing whether it be any of these above, biking, an exercise class, or something else. The point is, that exercise helps anxiety and depression. The research is out there. So get your blood flowing and your mind will feel better with the endorphin boost.