For a mood boost, go exercise!

gym

Exercise makes you feel good. Really good, with surges of excitement and enthusiasm which last for days.

“You don’t have to be the fittest person who is exercising every day to receive the feel-good benefits of exercise,” said David Conroy, professor of kinesiology. “It’s a matter of taking it one day at a time, of trying to get your activity in, and then there’s this feel-good reward afterwards.”

Conroy pointed out that short term rather than long term goals might be the key to sticking with an exercise program.

“When people set New Year’s resolutions, they set them up to include the entire upcoming year, but that can be really overwhelming,” he explained. “Taking it one day at a time and savoring that feel-good effect at the end of the day might be one step to break it down and get those daily rewards for activity. Doing this could help people be a little more encouraged to stay active and keep up the program they started.”

The research was based on the diaries of 190 university students who were asked to record their daily activities including exercise when it was 15 minutes or longer.

“We found that people who are more physically active have more pleasant-activated feelings than people who are less active, and we also found that people have more pleasant-activated feelings on days when that are more physically active than usual,” said Amanda Hyde, kinesiology graduate student.

“Our results suggest that not only are there chronic benefits of physical activity, but there are discrete benefits as well. Doing more exercise than you typically do can give you a burst of pleasant-activate feelings. So today, if you want a boost, go do some moderate-to-vigorous intensity exercise.”

Source: Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology, MedicalNewsToday

 
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