Health

Focus On The Mental And Emotional Benefits Of Exercise

Anyone who’s tried to stick to a workout routine knows what it’s like to have those days when you just don’t feel like it — when you feel like you haven’t gotten any results from your exercise, and you wonder why you even bother. That can be depression (or laziness, depending) talking, and a surefire way to push through that fog and get your running shoes on is to focus on how you’ll feel when you’re finished.

Photo by Andrey Burmakin (Shutterstock).

Even though it seems counterintuitive, you’ll feel more energised when you’ve finished even a short walk or workout. You’ll feel better about the workout — and about yourself — when you’re finished, and the folks at BodyHack offer up a few ways to tell if you’re just depressed as opposed to feeling lazy, and how to work through it. In addition to preparing for those days by making a schedule and trying not to think about it and make it a habit, they suggest you focus on how good you’ll feel later as a kind of carrot to keep you motivated.

The idea itself isn’t new — we’ve mentioned rewarding yourself as a way to keep exercise interesting, and the idea is definitely sound — if the feeling of accomplishment and the endorphins aren’t enough to get you up and onto the treadmill or exercise bike, maybe treating yourself to something nice when you’re finished will do the trick. How do you stay motivated to work out on those down days? Share your tips in the comments below.

5 Hacks to Stick to Exercise Through Depression [BodyHack]