This year many of us had much more time than usual to reflect and look closely at our lifestyles, and with all that extra time at home, in particular what we do for self care. With many people suffering from stress and an increased level of anxiety, lots of us turned to exercise as an outlet. Particularly as our one outdoor walk a day was for the majority, for at least a period of six-weeks, our only outing of the day.
With the spotlight on our physical health, we should be looking at our mental health and wellbeing with just as much focus. Especially as the two go hand in hand, side by side.
The benefits of exercise in all it’s varying forms are long reaching, and far exceed our actual physical health. The general consensus is that the effects of exercise have a far greater immediate effect on your mental state of mind over that of your body. Let’s take a look at how to make the most of your work out, and the impact on your mental wellness too as well as how to maximise these effects:
Sharper memory and thinking. Research shows that the endorphins you release while exercising help you concentrate and feel more mentally sharp throughout the day. Long term benefits include prevention of age-related decline on the brain, as exercise stimulates the growth of new brain cells. Win, win.
Confidence and Self Esteem. Actively investing in your mind, body and soul is incredibly rewarding and does wonders for your sense of self worth. Small exercise goals like a 10 minute walk a-day or a fun 30 minute dance class can easily be worked into your daily routine. During lockdown, many PT’s and fitness personalities on Instagram offered free virtual classes. Nowadays, you don’t even need to enter a sweaty gym to exercise if you don’t want to!
Improved Sleep Patterns. Incorporating even short bursts of exercise into your day helps regulate sleep patterns. Gentle stretching or a yoga session that ends with meditation in the evening will send you off on a relaxing snooze.
- Combatting Anxiety and Depression. Depression and anxiety fuel feelings of tiredness and can make you feel lethargic. Exercise has the opposite effect, filling you with feel-good hormones and energy. Regular exercise help you cope in a healthy way with stressful situations, reducing the impact of daily stress and boosting the immune system.
Here at Chi Chi, we have recently launched our own Activewear Edit! Designed to make you look and feel good while you feed your mind, body and soul.