By: Charlene Hutsebaut, Fitness Expert for The De-Stress Diet: The Revolutionary Lifestyle Plan for a Calmer, Slimmer You
Is it a good idea to exercise when you’re feeling stressed?
Moving has many “de-stressing” benefits.
Use these top ten tips to guide you:
1. Use short non-exhaustive sessions of varying intensities.
2. Do these shorter workouts more often in a week rather than only 2 or 3 longer bouts.
3. Weight train. It helps to increase muscle which in turn positively influences your metabolism.
4. Exercise at work. Walk at lunchtime or do a short office workout or yoga practice somewhere quiet.
5. Move outside. Studies show increases in mood and Vitamin D intake (great for weight management, bone health and cancer prevention)
6. Exercise with others. The benefits of social activities are:
- Boost in mood
- It’s fun and makes us laugh
- We get a natural hit of the happy chemical dopamine because of the tribal nature of social settings
- Stimulates healthy competition
- Can bring more purpose to workouts for some people
- Allows time with partners, family or friends which otherwise may not happen
- Gives a designated time to meet someone to be active
7. Rest. The body needs time to rejuvenate and repair after workouts. This is just as important as the workouts themselves and you’ll come back stronger. Continually struggling through hard workouts day after day will only increase your feelings of stress.
8. Take the stairs. A British Journal of Sports Medicine study found that going up and down stairs for 2 minutes, 5 times per day boosted their fitness over an 8 week period. This is another way to take time out from your work day to “De-Stress”.
9. Vary and alternate your workouts. Move like our hunter-gatherer ancestors and modern Olympic athletes. One day have a short workout, the next slightly longer then take a rest day.
10. Try something brand new. It takes you out of your comfort zone. This will allow you time to be in the moment as you learn new movement patterns. Imagine being able to forget about the stressors of your life even for a few minutes.