Welcome to another new day here in Carol's Corner. Finally having something besides sub zero temperatures. Gonna have a few pics before we get started. I am wearing what I call casual glam today. The next picture will have the rest of my outfit.
This is gonna be my outfit when I do my first 5k walk on Mother's Day, minus the necklace.
Was waiting to wear something I thought this cool FitBit band would look good with and had the perfect BandCuff to wear over the clasp. No matter how casual the outfit, I usually find a way to make it more glam. I don't do plain. LOL!!!
So for today's topic I am going to try and do something on how walking and exercise can help depression and anxiety. I'm going to use material from “Everybody Walk, The Movement To Get America Walking” ,in an article entitled” Depression and Anxiety: Exercise Eases Symptoms”.
You probably don't think of exercise when you are anxious or depressed, but once you get motivated exercise can make a big difference.
Exercise helps and improves a number of health problems including high blood pressure, diabetes,and arthritus. Research on anxiety, depression, and exercise show that the psychological and physical benefits of exercise helps reduce anxiety and improves mood.
The links between anxiety, depression, and exercise aren't quite clear, but working out can definitely help you relax and make you feel better. Exercise may also keep anxiety and depression from coming back once you feel better.
HOW DOES EXERCISE HELP DEPRESSION AND ANXIETY?
Exercise probably helps ease depression, a number of ways that may include:
1. Releasing feel good brain chemicals that may ease depression(neurotransmitters and endorphins)
2. Reducing immune system chemicals that can worsen depression
3. Increasing body temperature, which may have calming effects
Exercise has many psychological and emotional benefits too. It can help you:
1. Gain confidence. Meeting exercise goals or challenges, even small ones, can boost your self-confidence. Getting in shape can also make you feel better about your appearance.
2. Take your mind off worries. Exercise is a distraction that can get you away from the cycle of negative thoughts that feed anxiety and depression.
3. Get more social interaction. Exercise may give you the chance to meet or socialize with others. Just exchanging a friendly smile or greeting while you walk around your neighborhood can help your mood.
4. Cope in a healthy way. Doing something positive to manage anxiety or depression is a healthy coping strategy. Trying to feel better by drinking alchohol, dwelling on how badly you feel, or hoping anxiety and depression will go away on its own can lead to worsening symptoms.
WHAT KIND OF EXERCISE IS BEST?
The word “exercise” may make you think of running laps around the gym. But exercise includes a wide range of activities that can boost your activity level to help you feel better. Of course exercise that can get your heart pumping can help, but so can gardening, washing your car, or strolling around your block and other less intense activities. Anything that gets you off the couch and gets you moving is exercise that can help improve your mood.
You don't have to do all your exercise at once either. Broaden how you think of exercise and find ways to fit activity into your routine. Add small amounts of activity throughout the day. For example , take the stairs instead of the elevator. Park a little bit further from your work to fit in a short walk. If you live close to your work, consider walking or biking.
HOW MUCH IS ENOUGH?
Doing 30 minutes or more of exercise a day, 3-5 days a week can significantly improve depression symptoms. But smaller amounts of activity-as little as 10-15 minutes at a time-can make a difference. It may take less time exercising to improve your mood when you do more vigorous activities such as running or bicycling.
The mental health benefits of exercise may only last if you stick with it long term-another good reason to find activities you enjoy.
HOW DO I GET STARTED- AND STAY MOTIVATED?
Starting and sticking to an exercise program can be a challenge. Here are some steps that can help. Of course check with your doctor before you begin any new exercise program.
1. Identify what you enjoy doing. Figure out what type of physical activity you're most likely to do, and think about how and when you are most likely to follow through. Do what you enjoy to help you stick with it.
2. Get your mental health provider's support. Talk to your doctor or other mental health care provider for guidance and support. Discuss concerns about an exercise program and how it fits into your overall treatment plan.
3. Set reasonable goals. Your mission doesn't have to be walking for an hour five days a week. Think realistically about what you may able to do. Tailor your plans to your own needs and abilities, rather than meet unrealistic guidelines you are unlikely to meet.
4. Don't think of exercise as a chore. If exercise is just another “should” in your life that you don't think you're living up to, you'll associate it with failure. Rather look at your exercise schedule the same way as you look at your therapy sessions or medication-as one of the tools to help you get better.
5. Address your barriers. Figure out what's stopping you from exercising. If you feel self-conscious, for instance, you may want to exercise at home. If you stick to goals better with a partner, find a friend to work out with. If you don't have money to buy fancy exercise gear, do something that's virtually cost-free like walking. If you can think about what's stopping you from exercising, you can probably find an alternative solution.
6. Prepare for setbacks and obstacles. Give yourself credit for every step in the right direction, no matter how small. If you skip exercise one day, it doesn't mean you should give up and quit. Just begin again the next day. Think of each new day as a new beginning and another opportunity for sucess.
DO I NEED TO SEE MY DOCTOR?
Talk to your doctor to make sure which activities, how much exercise,and what intensity level is OK for you. Your doctor will consider what medications you take and what health conditions you have. He or she may have some good advice on getting started and staying motivated.
If you exercise regularly, but anxiety or depression symptoms still interfere with your daily living, see your doctor or health care provider. Exercise is a great way to relieve anxiety or depression, but isn't a substitute for therapy or medication if exercise alone doesn't help your symptoms enough.
I hope you found this issue to be helpful. Many people suffer from anxiety and depression and if there are simple things like exercise to deal with these issues, you certainly have nothing to lose and everything to gain by seeing what exercise can do for you. Keep on the journey, don't look back, only look forward. Your best days are ahead of you. Channel your inner strength and keep moving forward. Till next time, God Bless.