If you are my loyal readers, you might know how much I like to work out. I am not only interested in working out, but I also like aesthetic activities like cycling, jogging, and daily running. However, there are days when you just want to stay curled in bed and enjoy some hot chocolate. As winter is approaching and gloomy weather is making me feel grayer, I feel it is high time to discuss how it feels when you want to stay fit but you also do not want to work out. As the gloomy weather is approaching fast, I feel like lack of sunlight, cold long nights, and criminally bad mood is also approaching fast.
According to psychologists, in winters depression spells increase and more people get drawn towards lazy routines. These lazy routines only make things worse and you feel lower than usual. This is a constant cycle that goes on till you reach the pit of depression. There is no doubt that it gets pretty comforting but you need to break the spell. In fact, with continuous workouts, you can find a way to be more productive. Exercises also lift your mood and help you stay happy and satisfied.
Within this article, I am going to explain some of the scientifically proven ways exercise helps in improving mental health. I am also going to highlight a few of my personal favorite exercises that I try on lazy days. Although it is better to go out these exercises will help stay active enough to beat the gloomy winters.
What Is The Link Between Exercises And Mental Health?
Most people find it very difficult to understand but our body movement has very direct contact with our mental health. Everything that we do revolves around energy. The food we eat is a form of energy, the surplus calories that we have in our body are also a form of energy. Similarly, our negative emotions and our positive feelings are also energy. Our body needs an outlet so that we can get rid of all the surplus energy. This usually works in the form of exercises which is the reason people feel a euphoric rush right after an intense workout session. Some of the main mental health benefits that are linked with exercise include:
- Exercises help in improving focus which eventually helps you complete the task faster
- Exercises are very good for boosting mood
- Exercises help in improving creativity by easing the musing process
- Exercises help you let out your frustration, anger, and negative emotions
- Exercises are a very good outlet for people who do not want to let out their anger on a living object.
Some of the Best Exercises That Have Helped Me over the Years
In winter the depressive spell gets very lengthy. In these conditions, I like to take strolls in the neighborhood, this is especially good because I like to capture pictures as well. Apart from this, I like to ride my bike in the morning. However, there are lazy days when I just want to stay in bed. I still manage to work out a little through easy exercises. Some of my favorite workouts that I like include:
Yoga is one of the most effective exercises because I have seen improvement in my body health, my mental health along with my overall body flexibility. The best part is that I do not have to leave my bed. Sometimes I just open my window and soak in the sunlight for a bit. This is my favorite workout for the winter weekends where I spend time sunbathing and working out. Sometimes I sip my morning coffee while I work out. You can start with some simple meditation techniques and then ease yourself into some fun poses. Two of my favorite poses include the boat pose and the cow pose. I also like the chair pose but I am still trying to perfect it.
Deep breathing is one of the most calming exercises. I feel like with the help of deep breathing I no longer feel overwhelmed by emotions. I can now handle all kinds of emotions. In most cases when things get out of hand, deep breathing helps me stay in control. Apart from this, I have seen my behavior change with just deep breathing exercises. Even in most frustrating situations, I have seen myself getting better. Just a few minutes of deep breathing helps boost mood and also improves confidence, focus, and creativity.
Aerobics is a very fun way to work out. It might be a little intense compared to the two exercises I have mentioned above but you will see that it has a better impact overall. During extremely gloomy days when sunlight is rare, aerobics can help in boosting the overall energy. Aerobics can involve simple high-intensity exercises but if you do not like repetitive exercises you can also rely on dance or Zumba. Music will instantly help you improve your mood and get you into the groove. Even in the worst mood, you can play a fun upbeat song and you will see that your heartbeat starts to sync with it, and eventually it lifts the mood as well.
Gardening is a fun exercise but most people feel that it is no longer an exercise. However, scientific research proves that it is generally good for arthritis and very good for deep breathing. Staying closer to the plants also helps you improve the quality of the air you take in because you are inhaling clean and oxygen-rich air as compared to air full of dust. The best part is that if you use a lawnmower you will be burning a lot of calories in a very limited amount of time.
There are psychological studies that prove light, especially sunlight, is very good for health. However, most people feel that since the sun provides us warmth, it might be all about heat. However, it is more about the combination. If you feel like you do not want to leave your room, you can open your window. However, light therapy can be a very good substitute for the days when you feel sick.