8 Ways Running Can Work Wonders For Your Mental Health

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The Benefits Of Running For Your Mental Health

Running is known as a good thing for our health. It improves blood circulation which is essential to cardiovascular function, and it helps people lose more weight as it speeds up the metabolism. Very few would say that running is also good for mental health stability. You won’t need your therapist every week if you start running, as they say. 

Fact is when you go for a run, your heart would speed up it’s pumping, and the blood would flow into the body at a faster pace. Your body is now ready to do more physical work, and your mind will follow as well. This is called “natural high.” You get the energy you need to stay awake and be active the whole day.

This natural high can make a person very happy and more relaxed, and in one way or the other provide benefits that are very useful for your mental state. “The link between exercise and mood is pretty strong,” said Michael Otto, PhD. “Usually within five minutes after moderate exercise you get a mood-enhancement effect.”

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Stress Management. Running is found to be of help in controlling stress as it increases the body’s capacity to overcome mental tension. Physical activity elevates the norepinephrine concentration, a chemical which helps neutralize the brain’s reaction to stress. That is why there are instances wherein it is suggested that when stress creeps in, you get into physical activities instead. This will help you bring your stress level down and be able to cope. As Sarah Gingell Ph.D. said in her online article titled ‘How Your Mental Health Reaps the Benefits of Exercise,’ “Exercise is well known to stimulate the body to produce endorphins and enkephalins, the body’s natural feel-good hormones which can make problems seem more manageable.”

Sunshine Vitamin. The sun is a rich source of vitamin D. And being on the run during the early morning will enable you to get that much-needed vitamin D. This helps lessen the chances of developing depression. Though vitamin D can be obtained from other means, still, getting it naturally from the sun can give you a full benefit of it. That is very beneficial for the body’s immune system.

Lessens The Chance Of Cognitive Disease Occurrence. Running helps boost a much-needed hormone that would protect the human brain from having cognitive diseases. It supports brain health and eliminates the chances of hippocampus degeneration. Running strengthens the mind; reducing the chances brain deterioration. Instead, it protects and puts the mind intact. That is why mature people are very much encouraged to do some physical activities to strengthen their mental health further and at the same time prevent it from other mental health diseases.

Calm Brain State. Running is a huge help in calming down a person’s anxiety. Aside from the fact that it helps keep your mind off of the things that trigger the anxiety in you, it also stabilizes the body’s hormones. And once the hormones are in control, the chances of you having anxiety or depression would be slim.

Brainpower Boost. Running helps in producing new brain cells, and it is also found to be very helpful in improving brain performance as well. Running elevates the brain-derived protein levels which opens the doors for more learnings, sharp decision-making, and thinking. It boosts the brain’s performance. When you are into running, your brain will be focused with attention to details enhanced. Weighing things over and eventually having the ability to make a well-thought decision are sure for you.

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Improves Sleeping Patterns. Running is also found to be very beneficial in improving sleep. Dr. Phyllis Zee, an expert on sleeping patterns, from the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, said that “One of the reasons why sleep is deeper, at least acutely, after more vigorous exercise is that sleep is also for energy balance and metabolism. And therefore what you’ve done is increase your metabolic need for sleep.” Since it can neutralize body hormones and improve chemical production, it will put the human body at ease. And eventually, promote more extended rest which is very beneficial to the body. Longer rest will help your body adjust, heal and rejuvenate. And after such, you will wake up rested and feeling much better than the days before.

Increased Productivity. When you run or get into any physical activity, the tendency is that your energy will be released. This will enable you to do more than you usually can do. And when it comes to work, you get to be more productive. Because of running, your body will get used to vigorous physical activities, and that is why you will not get tired that easily.

Increased Creativity. Being on the run allows your brain to work fast. And this can also help put your creativity levels on the go. It enables you to think deeper, explore more options and create things out of the ordinary. Your brain will surprise you with so many ideas that you never thought possible.

Now, when you go out for a run, keep in mind that you are not only putting your body into shape but your brain as well. The chances of having mental health disorders would be eliminated, and your life would be in order. You will be more in control, can decide over things and eventually, your confidence will come back. With all the benefits that running can bring, it is not a surprise if you make it a daily thing from now on.