We all know that movement and being active is good for us. Regular physical activity creates a variety of reactions in our body that improve our physical and mental health. One of those reactions is how we manage stress.
Any kind of exercise can provide you with some stress relief. Even a short walk during your workday can help ease some stress. But, the benefits of stress relief become more pronounced when you have a consistent workout routine.
Here are a few ways that a regular fitness habit, like CrossFit, can help you relieve stress:
1. Fitness promotes mindfulness.
Stress loves to compete for your attention. At the beginning of a workout, it can feel impossible to focus on your movements and let go of your day. You might even begin to replay all the stressful moments from your day.
But when you begin warming-up and getting into the WOD, at some point, you experience a shift. That neverending to-do list fades into the background, and your only focus becomes your breathing and movements. This mind-body connection is mindfulness. The more mindful and in the moment you are, the less stress you will experience.
2. Fitness elevates your mood.
When you work out, your brain delivers feel-good chemicals to your body. These chemicals elevate your mood, which gives you some short-term stress relief. In the long-term, a regular workout routine can decrease the number of stress hormones present in your body. This longer-lasting mood improvement takes more time to develop. It is more prominent when you follow a consistent training schedule where you’re getting regular exercise.
3. Fitness improves sleep.
Sleep, stress levels, and exercise are all connected through a chain of events. The chain kicks off with exercise. Regular exercise can improve the quality of your sleep. When you get good quality sleep, the result is a decrease in your body’s stress response. Basically, more movement means better sleep and less stress.
If you’re wondering what type of workout provides the greatest stress relief, that’s a great question. When it comes to physical activity, anything is fair game. The best thing you can do for your body and your mind is to stick with an activity that you enjoy.
At Contender CrossFit in Corpus Christi, we pursue fitness through quality programming, coaching, and community. To learn more about how to get started with one of our programs, contact us today.