Mental Health and Exercise

It really is a BIG deal!

Have you ever felt like you just don’t have enough energy to move? Many Americans feel this way. In an article by the New York Post in 2020, it was reported 65% of Americans reported feeling tired all the time. This can pose a problem when trying to complete everyday tasks. According to Runner’s World, activity levels still haven’t recovered from pre-pandemic levels.

During Covid-19 people were restricted to staying home in order to mitigate the spread of the virus. This led to many people living a sedentary lifestyle. While it was good for the environment, it was not necessarily good for the health of humanity. The Mayo Clinic links a sedentary lifestyle to the following risks:

  • High blood pressure
  • Obesity
  • High levels of body fat around the waist
  • Risk of death and other diseases

While these are visible risks, the invisible risks often get overlooked. Not getting enough exercise can lead to depression and other mental health related difficulties. These mental health problems can arise from sitting too much:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Loneliness
  • Poor Self-Esteem
  • Emotional Eating Habits

When these issues arise, they can lead to declining overall health. These issues, however, are usually invisible until they become a major problem because they are generally easy to hide. It is, however, easy to combat these situations before they become problematic.

You might be thinking, “that sounds like me!” There are ways to make changes to combat this “sitting syndrome”. Regular exercise and physical activity can greatly improve your quality of life.

Actions You Can Take to Get Started

Maybe you have been inactive for a while, and you are unsure of how to get started. The CDC recommends getting 150 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity each week. Broken down, this is only 30 minutes, 5 times a week. It may take some time to build up to this activity level, but your body will thank you for it and you will have more energy. The CDC also offers this awesome log to keep track of your weekly exercise.

The Mayo Clinic makes these recommendations to help with getting started:

  • Find something you would like to do
  • Discuss recommendations with your doctor or healthcare professional
  • Don’t set unrealistic expectations
  • Set a positive mindset; treat exercise as a priority
  • Be aware of roadblocks
  • Be PREPARED for set backs

Not only does regular exercise keep your body functioning properly, but it helps your brain feel good as well. Even if you have been sitting around for a while, it is never too late to get up and start moving. Find a friend and get moving with them!

Exercise Resources

No matter how you decide to exercise, it is my hope that you will get up and get moving.

***If you are feeling unsafe, please text *988, call 911, or visit your nearest emergency room.

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