Everyone knows that exercise has a lot of benefits not only in improving one’s health but also in achieving happiness. You may think that it’s just a coincidence if you feel less worried and less stressed after your daily dose of exercise, but it’s not.
Here are 10 reasons why exercise makes you happy:
# 1 It helps in releasing happy chemicals to the brain
A chemical called dopamine, which plays a vital role for achieving happiness, acts as brain neurotransmitter that contributes to the feeling of happiness and pleasure to humans.
Studies show that as you grow old, you constantly lose significant amounts of dopamine in the body, which is the reason why you have to constantly look for experiences and situations that can help in releasing dopamine in the brain.
One of the best ways to increase the production of dopamine in the body is to exercise. Going to the gym is not necessary. Simple activities like running or brisk walking in the neighborhood, sit-ups and playing ball games will do.
# 2 It relieves stress
Regular exercise does not only help in easing stress by sweating out all the worries you had in the day; it also prevents stress from affecting you for a long time.
When you work out, you are technically subjecting yourself to low stress levels by countering the negative effects of hormonal changes and increasing your heart rate. Once you subject yourself to low stress levels through exercise, your body will soon adapt to become a better life stressor handler. Keep in mind that less stress equates to living a worry-free life.
# 3 It energizes you
Another good reason why exercise makes you happier is because it makes you feel more energized. You definitely experience those days when you feel tired of doing your preferred exercise routine even if you have already scheduled it before. However, even if you are really exhausted from work or just came from a busy weekend, make it a point to perform your exercises. Most likely, you will feel better and more energized right after your workout.
Starting today, instead of sitting on a couch after a long day of work, push yourself to be in the workout mode so you will feel more energized before the day ends. This is essential so you can always start another day of stressful work in the office.
“Keeping your body healthy is an expression of gratitude to the whole cosmos — the trees, the clouds, everything.” Thich Nhat Hanh
# 4 It is a confidence booster
Improving your self-confidence is another reason why exercise makes you happy. A lot of people have low self-esteem, mainly because they feel bad about their body and about how they look. Such feeling may transpire to another level of negativity, which can have a negative impact on different life areas like relationships with people, career path, and even life goals.
One great way to counter that feeling is to perform regular exercises. Isn’t it exciting to see some transformations in your body after months of sweating out? Exercise not only helps in shaping up your body; it also helps you to feel much stronger and become more confident and independent. Self-confidence is one ingredient to achieving overall happiness.
“To keep the body in good health is a duty… otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.” Buddha
# 5 It provides a worry-free life
If you are suffering from anxiety, then exercising can be a simple solution to that.
Recent studies show that exercise is a quick mood booster especially for people who suffer from anxiety attacks. For added long-term relief, they undergo talk therapy and meditation afterward.
Whenever you feel nervous or worried, instead of staying in your room all day to look for solutions, divert your attention to working out. You’ll be surprised with its effects in the coming days.
“Lack of activity destroys the good condition of every human being, while movement and methodical physical exercise save it and preserve it.” Plato
# 6 It promotes better sleeping patterns
Are you suffering from insomnia? Instead of taking those sleeping pills, why don’t you try exercising?
Regular exercise and staying active can improve your sleeping habits and help you combat sleeping disorders. Aside from helping you improve the quality of your sleep, it can also elevate your energy, which can boost your enthusiasm after waking up every morning.
# 7 It improves your mood
A 5 to 10-minute cardiovascular exercise is usually enough to lift your mood. It’s because when you keep moving, you allow your brain to release chemicals like dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin that all contribute in getting that good feeling. So next time, make it a point to go for a walk especially if you are not doing anything. Aside from being a good form of exercise, it can also make you feel happier.
“Physical fitness is not only one of the most important keys to a healthy body; it is the basis of dynamic and creative intellectual activity.” John F. Kennedy
# 8 It provides more mental resiliency
The more physically challenging exercises you do, the more you more mental toughness you get. When you have more mental toughness, you can handle higher amounts of stress. For other people, developing mental resiliency may be addictive but little do they know that these will help in dealing and handling more things in the future. To become mentally resilient, you must train yourself to try various sports and physical activities like martial arts, running, cycling and gymnastics.
The higher your energy level, the more efficient your body. The more efficient your body, the better you feel and the more you will use your talent to produce outstanding results. Anthony Robbins
# 9 It improves the body’s immune system
Exercise improves immunity by flushing away bacteria from our lungs. It may also drain wastes from our body by increasing the lymphatic system’s activity.
Hormonal stress slows down when you engage yourself to exercise. With proper nutrition and rest, exercise prevents the body from being prone to sickness; thus, a healthy body is always equivalent to a happy life.
“Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.” Jim Rohn
# 10 It lets you do whatever you want to do
Happiness comes next when you can do the things you always dreamed to do. From bungee jumping, kayaking, weightlifting to dancing, you can exercise while having fun at the same time. If you are the type of person who is not into sports, then you may try other activities like playing hide and seek with the kids, doing some friendly wrestling with your significant other or strolling at the park with your dog. That way, you can still exercise even if it’s not that rigorous.
These are some of the reasons why exercise makes you happy. What are you waiting for, go for it to be fit and have fun. Remember, life is short so always make the most out of it.
This post is a courtesy of Eva Lewis, a fitness expert.
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