Being active isn’t just for maintaining a healthy weight. It also reduces your risk for all kinds of chronic diseases and helps you feel more confident. What’s more, being physically active is a fun and effective way to boost your mood.
When I’m feeling anxious, upset, stressed or low energy, I grab my helmet, hop on my bike and hit the road. Other times, I’ll call up a friend and shoot hoops, or go for a long walk at a good pace. When it’s too rainy or snowy (as we know well in Massachusetts), I go to my local gym and spend about 30 minutes rocking the elliptical, pumping iron or taking one of the many classes my gym offers. When I’m done, I feel so much better – both physically and mentally. My head is clear and I feel a sense of relief – like a weight has been lifted (literally and figuratively), and I can face my problems. Sometimes after I work out, whatever big problem I was worrying about doesn’t seem like such a big deal anymore. Why? Physical activity stimulates the release of endorphins from the brain. These hormones are like our body's natural painkillers, increasing a sense of well-being and relieving stress.
Being active can also help keep mild depression away, by boosting energy and improving sleep. Research has shown that people who are not physically active are twice as likely to suffer from depression as active people. And that’s not all - studies have shown that regular, vigorous activity can even reduce symptoms of depression to a similar degree as antidepressant drugs. Now that’s pretty powerful!
For information and tips on how to get moving, improve your health and have fun, visit Mass in Motion.
What kinds of activities make you feel great?
Weekly Flu Report, November 21, 2014 posted on Nov 21
This week’s flu report indicates that rates of flu-like illness remained relatively stable as compared to last week’s numbers. It’s safe to say that we’ll see these rates rise in the coming weeks and months – and with the holiday season approaching, now’s a great time …Continue Reading Weekly Flu Report, November 21, 2014
The Holidays Are Fast Approaching! posted on Nov 18
The holiday season brings a lot of fun, but can be stressful at times. Try focusing on seeing things through your child’s eyes. Chances are the traditions and memories you make are what children will grow up to remember, not the gifts or fancy meals. …Continue Reading The Holidays Are Fast Approaching!
Weekly Flu Report, November 14, 2014 posted on Nov 17
The latest weekly flu report shows an increase in the rate of flu-like illness in Massachusetts over the past seven days. This is to be expected at this time of year in New England, and it’s a great reminder that if you haven’t gotten vaccinated yet, there …Continue Reading Weekly Flu Report, November 14, 2014