Approaches to Improving Your Health
Did you know that one of the many ways to combat stress and depression is to start exercising? According to a 2011 International Journal of Psychiatry in Medicine research study, exercise can be an excellent complement to traditional treatment for depression and anxiety. You might be one of those people that dreads hopping on the treadmill or putting on your running shoes, but exercise plays a variety of roles in improving both physical and mental health, and it takes less exercise than you might think.
LifePath Unlimited products can also help you improve mood and self-esteem with like-minded individuals while you begin your exercise program.
The Positive Impact of Exercise
The Surgeon General's Report states that exercise has a variety of positive effects on your mental and physical well-being. Three of the big bonuses include:Positive mood: Exercise has been shown to improve mood in many participants. When you exercise, your body releases chemicals that literally instruct your brain and body to feel better. Exercises is particularly valuable in improving mood with people suffering from anxiety and depression.
Self-esteem: Of course, a fantastic by-product of exercise is that you will likely start losing some weight. Your clothes will begin to fit better and you'll feel more comfortable in your new body. Numerous studies performed by Calfas & Taylor, Gruber, Mcdonald & Hodgdon have revealed the power that exercise can have on self-confidence. Even small increases in physical activity can make you feel more proactive in your health and improve your confidence every day.
Restful sleep: When's the last time you had a good night's sleep? If you can't remember, you're not alone. One 2008 Consumer Reports study found that as many as 44% of adults in the United States have difficulty falling or staying asleep. Unfortunately, the study also found that many of these people turn to prescription or over-the-counter drugs to help them count sheep. But there's a much healthier alternative -- exercise. But don't be too quick to dust off the exercise bike right before bed. According to Dr. Virgil D. Wooten, exercising three hours before bed can actually make it more difficult to fall asleep. Instead, try taking a morning walk (or jog) to help you wake up with some fresh air and morning sun.
How Much Physical Activity Do I Need?
You might be wondering just how often you need to commit to exercise during the week. You are busy after all. Well, one of the most important things you can do to start adding more physical activity to your life is make small changes to your daily routine to naturally add exercise without even realizing it. Take the stairs instead of the elevator or park farther away from work (you'll probably save some money if you live in a big city).
If you want to relieve the symptoms associated with two major mental ailments, depression and anxiety, there are some guidelines you can use to pair the right level of activity with the right results:
Anxiety: Anxiety is best combated with aerobic exercise, and you'll likely begin seeing results after a few weeks of regular physical activity. Regular physical activity typically translates into 20 minutes a day, 3-4 days a week. Most people can start walking to reduce anxiety even if they are in poor physical shape, but be sure to check with your doctor before starting any exercise program.
Depression: Exercise to reduce depression is best begun after you've already been exercising for several weeks - as more vigorous exercise is typically required to combat low mood. You should exercise several times a week.
There's really no good reason not to improve mental and physical health -- doing so can improve almost every aspect of your life. LifePath Unlimited also offers opportunities for you to engage in fun physical activities while practicing self-improvement through exotic retreats and seminars.
If you would like more information about improving health, contact us for exciting training programs and helpful fitness advice today.