The Benefits of Exercise for Depression

Kristen SchouKristen Schou
Aug 25, 2017

Kristen discusses the five benefits you gain from exercising when you have depression.

Depression and Exercise

Exercise Is a Natural Antidepressant

When you exercise, it’s a natural antidepressant. Doctors say that five minutes after a moderate workout people get an elevated mood.

Exercise makes you feel good. Because when we exercise our body releases chemicals, like endorphins and serotonin, which helps boost our mood.

Becoming Active Can Clear Your Mind

Exercise helps us clear our mind. When you are exercising you are sending blood to your brain which is helping you think more clearly.

It also increases the size of your hippocampus which is responsible for memory.

That’s why, when you want to concentrate, it’s good to get up and get moving because that’s when you’re going to have your best ideas.

It helps you create a routine and structure. Sometimes when we are suffering from depression, isolation and lack of motivation are very common. When we set an exercise routine, we are making ourselves accountable to exercise.

It Is a Healthy Habit to Have

As we just talked about, exercise helps boost your mood, which makes you feel more confident with yourself.

When you’re at the gym, or when you’re taking your dog for a walk, or when you’re running, or when you’re at home doing yoga, put on some music.

Maybe listen to an audio book. Maybe put on your favorite TV show or podcast.

Make this something that you want to do. Sometimes, going to the gym is not the most fun thing on today’s to-do list, but we can make it fun, and we can make ourselves want to go.

Exercise Gets You Outside

A common symptom of depression is isolation like we just said. Exercise makes us get outside, get in the sunshine, and get around others.

Exercising is a very social thing.

Either you’re going to the gym or taking the dog for a walk in the park. You’re around people; you’re around others, and you’re not isolated inside.

Outside, in the sun, and you’re a part of the community. I would suggest exercising outside rather than inside because it’s proven that exercising outside is way better for you than exercising inside.

It Improves Your Self-Esteem

The last thing I want to talk about is exercise improves our self-esteem and body confidence. I don’t know about you, but when I’m done with my workout or yoga routine,

I feel just better about myself. I feel like I accomplished something, and I feel just very good about myself. Even if I did only 15 to 20 minutes on a treadmill, I did something, and I accomplished something today, and that makes me feel so good.

Let me know down below what is your favorite type of exercise. What do you do to stay fit and stay healthy? I would love to know down below, because what helps you could help somebody else.

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