How to Improve Your Mental Health with Exercise

How exercise can improve your mental health

Today, I’ve got a fantastic guest post for you from Vourneen of The Plain Simple Life on how to improve your mental health with exercise. I’m really excited to share this one with you and I’m sure you’ll love it as much as I do.

But, first, a little about Vourneen. She’s a lifestyle blogger who focuses on minimalism, sustainability, and intentional living. She helps overwhelmed women to regain control of their homes by switching their mindset, decluttering and organizing, and introducing simple and sustainable living practices into their daily routines. 

Keep reading below to learn more about how to improve your mental health with exercise!

Guest post on how to improve your mental health with exercise.

How to Improve Your Mental Health with Exercise

BY: Vourneen

There’s no doubt that working out is good for your body, but did you know that you can also improve your mental health with exercise?

Exercise does more than just make you feel good. Regular exercise can help improve your mental health by increasing serotonin levels in the brain, reducing anxiety, promoting self-esteem and improving sleep quality.

The benefits of physical activity on mental health are undeniable and there are many different ways to break a sweat and reap the rewards. From yoga and running, to team sports and dance classes, it’s time we start thinking about our mental well-being the same way we approach our physical wellness by doing something active every day!

One of the best things about exercise is that there are so many options to choose from. If you’re not sure where to start, try finding an activity that you enjoy. When you enjoy something, you’re more likely to stick with it, and that’s important for your mental health.

Related read: How to set your priorities in life and what should be at the top of the list

And, if you’re new to the whole exercise and wellness thing, don’t worry – it’s never too late to start making exercise part of your life. Also, if you’ve struggled in the past, don’t give up!

So, if you want to improve your mental health with exercise, here are a few tips to get you started.

1. Find an Exercise Regimen That Works for You

When it comes to finding an exercise regimen that works for you, there are a few things to consider. 

First, think about what you enjoy doing. If you don’t enjoy your workouts, you’re less likely to stick with them in the long run.

Second, find something that fits into your schedule. If you can’t commit to a daily routine, three to five times a week is still beneficial.

Lastly, don’t be afraid to try something new. Maybe running isn’t for you, so consider boxing or yoga. If your gym has the same old weight machines, look online for at-home workouts you can do using minimal equipment.

There are countless ways to workout, so find what’s best for you and get moving!

Woman wearing boxing gloves - Tips on how to improve your mental health with exercise

2. Find Ways to Make Your Workouts More Enjoyable

To help you stick with it, try and find ways to make your workouts more fun and enjoyable. Here are some suggestions:

  • Find a workout buddy. It’s easier to skip a workout if you’re doing it alone, but having someone else around makes you less likely to skip
  • Try using music as a way to get yourself pumped up for exercise. Music is a great way to get in the zone and forget about your day-to-day stresses 
  • Make sure you’re challenging yourself. If you’re bored with your current routine, it’s time to mix things up. Try a new class at the gym, or take your workouts outdoors
  • Try something different. Often when we think of exercise, we think of running, weights, rowing machines, etc. But there are so many fun ways to exercise, such as Zumba classes, water sports, or roller-skating. 

Related read: 30 Day Personal Growth Challenge Ideas

3. Fix Your Lack of Motivation

It’s not uncommon to feel unmotivated to work out, especially if your mental health has been suffering recently. If you’re feeling unmotivated or discouraged during a workout, there are a few things you can do:

1. Talk to your instructor

Your exercise instructor or trainer may be able to give you some tips to make your workout more enjoyable or challenging.

2. Focus on your breath

When we get overwhelmed, it’s easy to forget to breathe properly. Focusing on breathing during a workout can help you feel more relaxed and calm.

3. Work in intervals

If you have a particularly long workout, try taking regular breaks throughout to catch your breath and get back to it! 

4. If all else fails… take a break!

It’s important to listen to your body, so if something doesn’t feel right, take a break and rest. Pushing yourself too hard can have negative effects on your mental health, so don’t be afraid to slow things down if need be.

Related Read: 10 Easy Ways to Practice Self Love (Even When You Feel Like Shit)

Conclusion

The health benefits of exercise are many and varied, but what does it do for your mental health? 

Exercise makes you feel better about yourself. It can improve mood disorders like depression or anxiety. And the best part is that exercising not only improves our physical well-being but also has a tremendous impact on how we think and feel.

The bottom line is that exercise is good for your mind and body, and it’s time to start thinking of it as an important part of your wellness routine. So, get active, have some fun, and enjoy the many mental health benefits that come with it!

Do you enjoy working out? Have you tried to improve your mental health with exercise? Let me know in the comments below! 

And make sure you check out Vourneen’s blog and follow her on social media. You can find her on Twitter @theplainsimple and on Instagram@theplainsimplelife.

xx
Katie

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8 Thoughts on How to Improve Your Mental Health with Exercise
    Rebecca
    29 Dec 2021
    11:53am

    I have personally always struggled with this, but this is a great helpful post!

      datingbitch
      29 Dec 2021
      3:30pm

      same here! It can be really hard to stay motivated to continue working out

    Lily-Anne
    29 Dec 2021
    9:17pm

    My biggest struggle is forcing myself to get up and exercise. I’m still trying to find a workout buddy to hold me accountable >_<

      datingbitch
      30 Dec 2021
      10:14am

      I have the same difficulty! It’s hard to motivate myself to start

    Jodie
    30 Dec 2021
    8:39am

    I love Vourneen’s blog and this is a great post! I need to walk every day for my mental health (I found out a couple of years ago when I was unable to walk for 4 months due to nerve damage in my foot). This post reinforces why. Thanks for sharing!

      datingbitch
      30 Dec 2021
      11:46am

      I love her blog too! I haven’t been super active with exercise lately, but I do think it’s helpful for my anxiety and I need to get back into it!

    Charlotte Birchall
    11 Jan 2022
    10:54am

    There are so many great reasons that exercise can help your mental health. At the moment, I am trying to get into a routine. Hopefully, soon it will find easier. Thank you for sharing.

      datingbitch
      11 Jan 2022
      11:01am

      Same here – I took a lot of time off from working out so I need to get back into it

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