Best Exercises for Anxiety and Depression
“The body is the mind and the mind is the body,” says psychologist Ben Michaelis, PhD. And this statement cannot be any truer because science has proven that when you take care of yourself, you are helping the whole system.
For those who suffer from depression or anxiety, exercise plays a key role in managing your symptoms because of the powerful link between your physical and mental health. But you already know that. It’s easy for others to say, “oh just exercise and your anxiety will go away.”
But what are the best exercises for anxiety and depression?
At Cutting Edge Performance Centre, we work with clients from different backgrounds including those with anxiety and depression. And we always ask our clients to be honest with the challenges they have so that we can support them during their fitness journey. From our experience, these type of exercises are really beneficial for those wanting to alleviate feelings of anxiety and depression.
1. Running helps you live longer
As simple as it sounds, running is actually one of the best exercises for your health. Not only can it zap calories, reduce food cravings, and lower your risk for heart disease, a recent study has revealed that by running for just five minutes a day might even help you live longer. Woohoo!
When it comes to anxiety, running helps improve your mood in many ways. It causes lasting changes in our ‘feel good’ neurotransmitters serotonin and norepinephrine, both during and after exercise, and the repetitive motions of running appear to have a meditative effect on the brain.
For people who suffer from depression, take note of this: In a 2006 review published in the Journal of Psychiatry & Neuroscience, researchers found evidence that exercise can work in a similar way to antidepressants, alleviating major depressive disorders by promoting the growth of new neurons in the brain. Wow!
2. Celebrities beat anxiety with Kickboxing
Have you ever felt so stressed that you just want to punch something (or someone)? You’re not the only one. Singer Ellie Goulding has been candid about the crippling panic attacks and stress that came with fame but she’s taken back control by kicking ass. Goulding has revealed that kickboxing and boxing are pillars of her workout regimen. If you’re always on edge, why not try kickboxing instead?
Kickboxing is an excellent way to release any stress or aggravation, and it not only is a great source of cardio, but it works many muscles in the body, helping you to feel stronger both physically and mentally. And if you’re worried that you might look silly kickboxing for the first time, please don’t be. Like all our kickboxing-loving clients at Cutting Edge, everyone has to start somewhere and this is one place where we can help build your confidence one punch at a time. Sounds like fun? It is!
3. Treat depression naturally with strength training
Strength training is not just limited to those who want to look ripped. Apart from helping you feel better, it actually also helps you experience a more restful night’s sleep, increase energy, and slow down ageing. Research has shown that regardless of your age, it helps you experience a sustained mood lift from progressive resistance training over the course of time.
If you’ve always wanted to get into strength training and to learn how to do it properly, pop in to Cutting Edge and we’ll be happy to give you some tips. Some of our clients who started with us without any prior strength training experience have transformed into confident fitness lovers. Which reminds us to tell you in the next post, of how personal trainer Maddi started as a client and ended up as a personal trainer. It’s true!
Dr John Moore, a wellness therapist in Chicago says that he has seen first-hand the therapeutic benefits of strength training with clients.
Weight lifting is for everyone. Here’s Courtnay doing us proud!
Do you have a mental and physical health goal you’d like to achieve? You know where to find us! You can also message us on Facebook for any bookings/questions.