Exercise is good for your wellbeing. It can help you to release stress, improve your sleep, give you a reason to take time out of the day for yourself and enhance your state of mind and mood more efficiently than a bar of chocolate or a glass of wine.
It can be difficult to feel motivated to exercise if you are stressed, anxious and when life (work, home, relationships, etc) all seem too difficult. It is not easy to justify taking time out of the day to take a few minutes or more to yourself. Knowing that you are doing something to reduce your stress, increase your ability to handle more “stuff” and look after your longer term health (enabling you to be there for loved ones) can often give you the “permission” you need.
Often stressful situations can look a lot different once you have walked away from the situation and come back.
Exercise causes a release of adrenaline, a stress hormone, however if you relax after the exercise is finished, the adrenaline levels reduce and you often feel better. The endorphins realised by exercise also make you feel happier and more relaxed. This along with the fatigue brought on by exercise usually helps with restful sleep.
Stress can often leave you fatigued, run down and an easy target for germs and contagious illnesses, especially if you travel by germ-ridden public transport.
Your white blood cells are the part of your immune system which seeks out germs and infections, and fights them. Exercise causes the number of white blood cells in your body to grow and circulate more efficiently. This increased activity by your white blood cells can improve your ability to fight off viral and bacterial infections.
A brisk walk, a cycle ride or some other outdoor activity every day can help with a feeling of wellbeing. It can help with weight management, which may affect your confidence and how you feel about yourself. It also exposes you to ultra-violet light, which causes the body to create Vitamin D3 a mood enhancer and an immune system booster among many other benefits.
Any other exercise, particularly if it makes you breathe a little harder than usual for a while, increase your heart rate and get warm, will have a beneficial effect on your health. It can also distract you from negative thoughts, give you something different to focus on and maybe give you a chance for positive social interaction.
It doesn’t have to be a weight training session in a gym or going for a run, it could be something like mowing your lawn, cleaning your home, etc which has the benefit of improving your surroundings, another Psychological boost. Other options include dancing, swimming, playing tennis, etc, and it really helps if the activity is something you enjoy rather than just something you do because you feel that you should.
Setting yourself a realistic daily target and achieving it, whether it is a 20 minute walk, 10 press-ups or running up the stairs a dozen times is a psychological and a mental boost. Giving yourself the opportunity to achieve targets, both as a way of increasing your growth / abilities / strength and to give you an opportunity to congratulate yourself and feel good about reaching the target.