Exercise Those Blues Away

It’s fairly normal to get the blues every once in a while. Sometimes things just don’t go your way, the thing you have been hoping for falls through, hormones surge way more than you’d like, or for no reason at all, you just feel sad. What do you do when those days come? Do you dwell on all the negative things in your life? Do you lie in bed all day and wallow in self-pity? Whine to your partner and drive them half crazy?

Oh, the blues can certainly be something to contend with! I want to encourage you today that there is a way to get rid of those blues faster than you think. You do not have to sit through 20 episodes of Friends hoping to stir up your happy chemicals so that you can put on a real smile. What you can do is get up and do some sort of physical activity.

Yes, exercise is known to take the frown and turn it upside down in no time. In fact, way back in the 1700’s doctors in Scotland who were dealing with patients with depression prescribed that they get up and do some serious farm chores because they knew the physical activity would stir up their endorphins (happy chemicals) and transform their moods.

The same goes for today. Feeling sad? Tired of feeling sick and tired? Get up and commit to some sort of physical activity. You can go for a brisk walk around the block or in nature, take your bike for a ride, mow your yard, play tennis with a friend, get on the elliptical, hit the golf course, hike a hiking trail, or any other activity that sounds appealing. The act of getting your cardiovascular system and muscles moving releases endorphins in your body and endorphins are chemicals that give you a sense of well-being. This is why so many people exercise- because they FEEL BETTER afterward mentally and physically.

Chronic Stress Blues

We live in a society that seems to always be in a hurry. We have fast-food, drive-thru, and instant everything. We do not want to wait and we feel rushed more often than we should. It can all lead to chronic stress, which can certainly lead to feeling blue. Chronic stress wears your immune system down and when you are not feeling up to par physically, you won’t feel up to par mentally. This is why we see burnout and mental breakdowns occur; people do not know how to reduce and minimize stress.

Exercise is proven to reduce stress, which is helpful for feeling happier and more relaxed. Too many families are stressed out, burned out, and living life in a constant state of sadness. They tend to minimize the importance of slowing down, taking deep breaths, enjoying the little things, and keeping themselves fit. A simple 30 minute walk each day will people a world of good, yet so many fail to follow through with this.

You can exercise those blues away if you will just make the commitment to “just do it” regardless of how you feel. Even if you have every good reason to lie in bed and sulk, get up anyway and get moving. You might be surprised at how quickly you forget about the reasons you could be sad. You might even learn to love exercising and look forward to it! Life’s too short to allow the blues to control you! Just do it!

Photo: Pexels

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