5 Steps to Take When You Are Looking For How to Reduce Stress
Stress is a part of everyday life, and a healthy level indicates that you’re engaged in meaningful activities and service. Over time, though, stress can damage your body by keeping your inflammation levels constantly elevated, which can increase your risk for disease. Read more to find out how to reduce stress by participating in something that’s good for you anyway: exercise!
While it may seem counterintuitive to add one more thing to your schedule, exercise can significantly decrease your stress levels and give your body great health benefits. Here are a few of the ways exercise can help:
A Good Dose of Endorphins
While this is commonly called a “runner’s high,” you don’t have to run to get the experience. Jumping into a game of tennis or playing soccer with your kids in the backyard will give you the same mood lift.
You may find that as you settle into a rhythm with exercise, you’ll feel your brain settling into a meditative state. Whether you’re walking, running or swimming, you may notice that the repetitive pattern is good for reducing your stress. If you’re not experiencing this effect, try a form of exercise that requires a little more concentration. You’ll forget about your stressors and focus on the task at hand.
Maybe you’re convinced that exercise would help, but you’re not sure how to reduce stress with it because you don’t know where to start. Here are a few broad guidelines for beginning an exercise routine:
Talk to Your Doctor
Any time you decide to begin a new exercise regimen, it’s important to get cleared by your doctor. They also might be able to make some suggestions about which types of exercise will be right if you have any physical limitations.
If you’re feeling enthusiastic about how to reduce stress with exercise, that’s great. Just be careful not to express that enthusiasm by pushing yourself too far, too fast. Try a few walks around the neighborhood before you start shopping for running shoes, for instance. You can also join a class, where the instructor is knowledgeable about helping beginners ease into exercise without injury.
Choose What You Love
Maybe you have a friend that swears by 20 minutes a day on the rowing machine, or your brother keeps pushing you to run a 5k with him. You might be visualizing yourself cycling for miles every day. It’s important, though, to let go of all of the influences that shape your “shoulds” with exercising and, instead, find an activity that’s fun. Better yet, choose two or three that you like and mix them up to prevent burn-out.
Starting an exercise program? Start with your partners at Mosaic Life Care Journey, where you’ll find like-minded friends, all committed to living their best life. Check out the variety of fitness classes we offer, where you’re sure to find the right fit for you.