By: Avera McKennan Fitness Center Staff
Creating fitness goals, seeing your progress, and reaching your goals helps us all feel accomplished. Exercise makes you feel like you’re moving in a positive direction and making a lasting impact on your physical health. Improving your physical health also has benefits for your mental health, find out 4 advantages your mental health gains from exercise.
1. Get Better Sleep
Being active, especially completing physically demanding workouts, can increase your body’s need to rest. Sleepiness can occur as a result of muscle fatigue and low energy levels. So, your sleep may be enhanced if you commit to getting 150 minutes of exercise per week (30 minutes per day) as recommended by the CDC.
2. Boost Endorphins
The Anxiety & Depression Association of America states that “Exercise and other physical activity produce endorphins—chemicals in the brain that act as natural painkillers—and also improve the ability to sleep, which in turn reduces stress.” Exercise has been proven to make you feel better by promoting anti-anxiety effects, decreasing levels of tension, elevating your mood, and improving self-esteem.
3. Reduce Stress
Exercise promotes better sleep quality and better sleep reduces stress. According to the American Psychological Association, “Sleep is so crucial that even slight sleep deprivation or poor sleep can affect memory, judgment, and mood. Research has shown that most Americans would be happier, healthier, and safer if they were to sleep an extra 60 to 90 minutes per night.” A survey concluded that stress increases when quality of sleep decreases.
4. Increase Energy
Movement increases oxygen circulation inside your body. Oxygen circulation supports your cardiovascular health and endurance. Workouts that increase your heart rate and blood flow raise your energy levels. This affects how you feel and what you can accomplish in a day.
More Thoughts on Exercise and Mental Health
Join a community of supportive fitness specialists and fellow members who offers encouragement, accountability, and motivation to remain active. A membership at the center can provide all these benefits to your mental health as well as a social outlet through group exercises, special programs and events.
Learn more about membership at the Member Services desk.
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