Exercise: The Ultimate Stress-Reliever

Perhaps it’s the result of having a new job, a new mate, or a new baby.  You are overwhelmed with a feeling of excitement.  Yet, you feel inadequate as well.  As a result, you are under a tremendous amount of stress.  At times, you might feel as if there’s no relief in sight—as if you’re on a treadmill which shows no signs of stopping anytime soon.


However, the secret to effectively dealing with the stress may be to get your body onto an actual treadmill.  Exercise can be the key to stress relief.  It’s an obvious antidote to fatigue.  It can make you feel more energetic, improving your strength and resiliency.  It has been shown that individuals who are more physically fit often experience fewer health troubles.  In addition, exercisers are less likely to suffer from psychological problems such as depression, binge eating, or insomnia.

Without exercise, you are increasing the likelihood that you will be afflicted with colds, flu, or other medical problems.  Aerobic exercise in particular can improve your cardiovascular system and decrease your anxiety level.   Some studies have shown that, during aerobic exercise, a chemical is produced in the brain which helps to heal the body from stress-related conditions.   You should exercise at least three days a week for 30 minutes at a time in order to improve not only your health but your mental outlook.

If you find it difficult to become motivated to exercise, there are a number of steps you can take.  To begin with, you can join an exercise club.  Knowing that you’ll have to pay dues to a gym may make it more likely that you will actually end up exercising.  You might also consider enlisting the aid of a personal trainer.  A trainer can provide powerful motivation, pushing you to complete exercises you never thought possible.  Another idea is to join an exercise class.  There, you’ll meet other people who are in a similar position.  The camaraderie that develops between exercisers can help to reduce your stress level.     

In general, exercise should make you feel less anxious.  Your muscles become less tense and you will be less shaky after a round of exercise.  It has also been shown that exercise leads to an hour and a half to two hours of relaxation response.  This has also been referred to as the endorphin response.  As a result, your mood will improve, enabling you to deal more effectively with stress.

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Exercise can also improve your self-image.  You’ll experience greater self-worth, which will, in turn, reduce your stress level.  A confident person is an individual who knows how to handle stress without becoming flustered.  As a result of exercise, you may also end up eating better.  Your improved menu may also prove to be a stress reliever.  For instance, if you give up caffeinated drinks, you might become less jittery. 

In addition to your sessions in the gym, you should be looking for additional opportunities to exercise.   This could mean taking the stairs instead of the elevator, walking to work instead of driving, or playing touch football in the backyard with your children.  The point is to get moving—and keep moving—at every available opportunity.

Exercise quickens the blood flow to your mind, offering the brain additional sugars and oxygen which can be important if you are concentrating.  Exercise can also clear out waste products from the brain which can result in unclear thinking.  You will also feel a greater sense of well-being as a result of exercise.          


As has been shown here, exercise is beneficial for both the body and the mind.  As a result, it can relax you when other techniques fail.  By engaging in exercise, you free up your mind, enabling you to concentrate better and work more efficiently.  Chances are you will not only feel better, you will look better as well.  With your brain under control, you should experience less stress. Granted, exercise takes time and requires discipline, but it is well worth the exertion.  The good feelings you get from a powerful exercise session can actually last for days.  You may find that you actually look forward to working out because of the tremendous benefits it brings with it. 


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