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Top Benefits of Exercise for Mental Health

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The benefits of exercise are very well known. It can help you get fitter and have a healthier body, but what effect can it have on your mind and mental health? There is a very important relationship between the two, and anyone wanting to improve their mental health should consider fitness. Exercise for mental health is important, whatever your current state of mind, as there are so many benefits. So, how can exercise benefit you? And what kind of effects can you expect to see? Read on to see how you can change your life by making a few healthy choices each week. When you put in the effort, you can receive great rewards.

Building New Relationships

There are many individual exercises and activities you can do, such as a relaxing swim in the pool. But exercise often brings with it the chance to build new relationships with people. Joining a gym, sports team or fitness class can be a great way to spend time with others.

Forging new relationships that are built on something positive like fitness often fills people with positivity. Having other people rely on you and being needed within your group also gives people a sense of purpose and lets them know that they are needed and valued. Fitness highlights these relationships with others and celebrates them.

Exercise for Mental Health: Endorphins

Exercise releases adrenaline and a rush of endorphins, which gives us a sense of contentment, happiness, and well-being. These positive feelings can have a great effect on anxiety and depression, and exercise often has an amazing effect on a person’s recovery.

Although no mental illnesses is curable overnight, learning ways to cope and deal with your thoughts and symptoms in a healthy way is useful. Remember, if you do need more than exercise for mental health, make sure you consider therapy. When you put your mind, body, and soul into something, your body rewards you for it with an amazing sense of accomplishment.

Feel Proud

Another important aspect of exercise and fitness is the sense of pride that it makes you feel. Fitness goals and accomplishments come in all shapes and sizes. It might be to jog non-stop for 10 minutes or swim 3000 meters. Or, simply to get out of bed in the morning.

Every goal is individual and working hard for something then achieving it can evoke an incredible sense of pride and self-worth. Having that extra bit of self-confidence and pride can make anyone feel great and can be especially helpful when struggling with your mental health during and post rehab or in another difficult time.

There are so many more reasons to exercise than simply to stay fit. Mind you, that is a good enough reason in itself. Exercise for mental health is amazing; aerobic activity can relax you, help you build new relationships, and instill a sense of self-worth.

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62 Comments

  1. Ste J April 12, 2018

    Exercise allows one’s mind to wander and think of a myriad of things which takes away from the stresses. In The Philippines I have started hiking and have been building a pretty big network of friends who I assume I will bump into on rocky crags from time to time which is nice, it makes me feel part of the furniture. Having said that I don’t recommend hiking in 36 degree temperatures.

    Reply
  2. seaofwordsx April 12, 2018

    So true! 😍 Beautiful post! I love to do yoga or go swimming or surfing with friends. It’s so good for your health and especially your mental health. I feel way more relaxed and less anxious

    Reply
  3. Bridget M. April 12, 2018

    Love this post and it’s so true!!! Somedays I almost crave to go for a walk or do some sort of excercise! I always feel so much better, even if its just walking! :)

    Reply
  4. macjam47 April 12, 2018

    So true! I walk, use the pool at our health club, do Pilates, and do some weight training. I always feel energized and ready for anything after doing some exercise.

    Reply
  5. Jay April 12, 2018

    How can I not?

    Reply
  6. Jay April 12, 2018

    it ;)
    how can IT not?

    Reply
    1. Christy B April 23, 2018

      ;)

  7. Carolyn Page April 12, 2018

    Add great nutrition to that, Christy, and you have the ingredients for even better mental health.
    Another great post… :)
    xoxoxo

    Reply
  8. InspiresN April 12, 2018

    I absolutely agree with all the points you mentioned, it bring a great mood change after one sweats out! I also have read it helps boost self confidence which is great!

    Reply
  9. opinionatingblog April 12, 2018

    Such an amazing article! I think exercise is so important to a healthy lifestyle and it does effect your mental health, even if it’s just a walk around the block, it does make you feel better.

    Reply
  10. ortensia April 12, 2018

    “Mens sana in corpore sano”!!!

    Reply
  11. Ben Aqiba April 13, 2018

    Hi Christy,

    very informative post.Exercise is the best thing we can do for our health.In healthy body, healthy spirit, right :) Thank you

    Reply
  12. olganm April 13, 2018

    Thanks, Christy. Great post. Exercising has long-term benefits, but I must say that in my case, I try to exercise in the morning and it gets my day started on a good note. And going for a walk tend to work for inspiration also.

    Reply
  13. charlypriest April 13, 2018

    Your very right, it helped me with my depression, just to wake up and get out of bed to do pushups and go for a run, it literally made me that, get out of bed!

    Reply
    1. Christy B April 23, 2018

      That’s awesome, C!

  14. Totally agree 👍

    Reply
  15. tonylhynnbrennand April 13, 2018

    What a great help..love your post💕

    Reply
  16. Tina Frisco April 13, 2018

    Exercise clears my mind and settles my emotions. Wonderful post, Christy ❤

    Reply
  17. reeseofmind April 13, 2018

    Absolutely loved this post! So enlightening!

    Reply
  18. lauradoestherapy April 14, 2018

    Running is MY therapy! This is so true. I also love yoga and I feel such mental clarity after both.

    Reply
  19. Gallantly, gal April 15, 2018

    Yessss :)
    I’ve grown to love exercising on the regular. My body and mind feel off if I don’t now.

    Reply
  20. Definitely makes you feel better all round, even if its just a good walk.

    Reply
  21. Joan E Wilder April 19, 2018

    Christy, this is so true and it doesn’t take as much time as people think. Gaining self confidence is important as well as the health aspects!. Excellent article thank you!

    Reply
  22. Pete Day April 20, 2018

    I like to ride my bicycle,I like to ride my bike…I bike to work & everywhere else I can too…. As my back & legs are getting worse I tend to plod on rather than ride hard like I used to do bout 3months ago…..I love off road more than on tarmac but I guess going downhill fast is more of a stupid mentality thing for me but I do feel good after a hard off road session….Bring on the surgery & watch this space 😳

    Reply
    1. Christy B April 20, 2018

      I’m glad you like biking so much. It sounds like it helps you through your day :)

  23. Excellent post Christy and I do think too weather plays a part in this as exercise in the fresh air with some sunshine also boosts Vitamin D levels and having stared out at lashing rain from my treadmill this winter I felt better for sure, but am enjoying being outside now so much more.

    Reply
    1. Christy B August 19, 2018

      I’m pleased you are able to find ways to exercise throughout the year, including the treadmill indoors when it’s raining out. I’ve gone running in the rain and splashed in a huge puddle! Well, it’s a learning experience ;)

  24. onegirltwocents May 8, 2018

    I love this post! My favorite form of mental health care is hiking. The nature and fresh air does something good to my mind.

    Reply
    1. Christy B May 9, 2018

      That’s wonderful! Enjoy the trails :)

  25. Sam May 9, 2018

    Hi buddy nice article…pls check this artificial heart.

    Reply
  26. Varanasi Hospital May 11, 2018

    Exercise is not only a way of building new relationships but also re-inventing the relationship of body and mind.

    Reply
  27. Mrs. Anonymous May 19, 2018

    It is so true! It just makes you feel better altogether! For me, it is a good release of energy. I just recently switched to a job where I work behind a computer and it definitely is tiring. I need that extra physical push in my daily routine! :) Thank’s for the article!

    Reply
    1. Christy B July 13, 2018

      I hope you get that physical push you need this weekend or another time soon :) Have a great rest of your day!

  28. smithpamela27gmailcom May 19, 2018

    Excerise is a great way to help with your mental health. Walking outside has always been a way for me to clear my mind.

    Reply
  29. pieceofhealth11 May 24, 2018

    Nice article

    Reply
  30. Aui V. May 24, 2018

    What a very good reminder today! Thanks for sharing this one:)

    Reply
    1. Christy B May 24, 2018

      Thanks for appreciating it, Aui!

    2. Aui V. May 24, 2018

      :)

  31. rpradhanblog May 28, 2018

    Thanks for sharing. Exercise improves blood circulation in our body. It releases endorphin and improves our happiness and mental health.

    Reply
  32. Naim Ahmad May 28, 2018

    excellent piece

    Reply
  33. Peterbread June 1, 2018

    It definitely helps it’s just the motivation that seems to stop me. I’ve had periods when I’ve got regular exercise and it just makes you so much more productive in other areas.

    Reply
    1. Christy B June 4, 2018

      Great to hear and keep up the exercise :) Mentally recharging on a run or another form of fitness is a great way to make the most of our days.

  34. Martin June 9, 2018

    This is a great read, thank you for that! Great job.

    Reply
    1. Christy B June 11, 2018

      Great to hear you like it, Martin! Nice to have you here.

    2. Martin June 11, 2018

      Thanks for having me. Keep up the good work!

  35. Nishtha Gehija June 12, 2018

    Of all, the ones that I read for the first time are: forming relationships and pride. That was a novel way of looking at it!!! 👍🏻👍🏻

    Reply
    1. Christy B June 12, 2018

      Great to hear of your learning :) All the best to you!

  36. goodthoughtsbank June 12, 2018

    Love this! I’ve recently started the Couch to 5K challenge and have already seen a massive shift in my mental health. Being a bit under the weather the last week kept me away from the gym and again I can see how much of an impact it’s been having on my general mood – it’s no surprise that it’s dipped at the same time as this (very rude) cold came along! Particularly liked the point about self-confidence – I don’t think it’s emphasises enough to take pride in even what’s deemed the smallest achievements. Thank you! :)

    Reply
    1. Christy B June 12, 2018

      I’ve heard of the Couch to 5K challenge and good for you for taking it on! Your comment is beautiful :)

    2. goodthoughtsbank June 13, 2018

      Thank you 😊

  37. Marje @ Kyrosmagica June 13, 2018

    This is 100% true. Have shared to #ABRSC Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club on Facebook.

    Reply
  38. Mind Palaver June 21, 2018

    Couldn’t agree more. I’m Bipolar 1. For 6 years I couldn’t exercise due to a back injury. That seems fixed now so two months ago I took up running. It was great. Unfortunately gave myself shin splints so while I recover from that I’ll turn to other exercise. As for relationships a friend has come forward to help build a regime and avoid future injuries. I find it all really helps reduce anxiety levels. (John)

    Reply
    1. Christy B June 22, 2018

      Hi John, I am glad you have both friendship and exercise (and a combination of the two) to help you be in a healthier place xx

  39. kaitnbishop June 26, 2018

    I just wrote a post on this yesterday! Mental health and exercise are so linked. It’s not selfish to take the time to take care of yourself…it allows me to be my best self for my family, husband, and friends ❤️

    Reply
    1. Christy B July 9, 2018

      This is a wonderful statement of empowerment ♥

  40. WallyJay July 17, 2018

    I agree that exercise helps a lot! I am yet to feel any endorphins when I exercise though :( I just do it because I know I should lol

    Reply
    1. Christy B July 17, 2018

      I hope you find an activity you love and then you feel that awesome rush of endorphins!

  41. brianlazanik March 21, 2019

    Enjoyed your article Christy. Always appreciate that kind of positive outlook. Thanks for that.

    Reply
    1. Christy B March 22, 2019

      Thank you, Brian! Wishing you a peaceful day ahead.

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