One thing that never seems to diminish is the ever-present deadlines and responsibilities that we all accumulate. The effects of chronic stress on the mind and body are vast. From heart disease to fertility issues and weakened immune system, stress can quickly get out of control in our lives and wreak havoc. Stress can become overwhelming at times and have us searching for some relief.
Use Active Sports and Physical Activity to Reduce Stress and Anxiety
Before you start researching which new and trendy transcendental meditation workshop to attend, draw your attention to those dusty tennis shoes in the back of your closet. Medical professionals and scientists list active sports as a top means of reducing stress and anxiety. Many experts recommend exercising for 30 minutes a day to help support mental and emotional health. Here's why:
Activity Boosts Endorphins
Exercising, whether running, playing tennis, swimming, or shooting some hoops, raises blood pressure, lifts oxygen intake, and releases endorphins into the body. Endorphins are those "feel good" neurotransmitters that leave you happier and relaxed. Think of the mood you are left with after a supremely delicious and satisfying meal or a good belly-busting laugh with a loved one. Endorphins are the body's "happy juice." They're also the body's natural pain reliever and help reduce the body's perception of discomfort.
Exercise Keeps You Focused
Active sports force you into the now and take your mind off problems that may be causing you stress. The more intense the activity, the less your mind has room to focus on that project at work or pile of bills at home. As you focus solely on your breathing or the movement of your hands and feet to keep yourself upright, thoughts of your troubles rapidly disappear. We have adrenaline to thank for this, which relegates energy from the brain to the body for enhanced reflexes.
This kind of mindfulness is what those who meditate strive for, total presence in the moment. People have reported a feeling of clarity, ease, and focus while participating in both team and solo active sports. Giving your mind this little break from the constant stream of past and future projected thoughts has lasting calming benefits and gets easier with practice.
Physical Workout Improves Sleep
Do you have trouble sleeping ? Apparently, so does 68% of the population. Many people find that they are unable to sleep due to restless minds and racing thoughts. Exercise and active sports reduce stress and the exertion of energy tires out the body. What does this mean? When your head hits the pillow, you are much more likely to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.
You will need to determine for yourself when you should exercise in relation to your bedtime. Some find that exercising an hour or two before bed is best, and others prefer a morning or mid-day workout. If you are exercising at night, don't use pre-workouts or other performance-enhancing stimulants that will keep you up.
Whether in a group or one on one, active sports offer numerous benefits to our well-being. They are an excellent way to reduce stress and anxiety. Social interaction is one of the most effective means to feel connected and supported, bringing the "important" things in life into a better perspective. Being around those you enjoy instantly boosts endorphins and other feel-good neurotransmitters, which leaves you feeling happy and content.
Friendly competition, sometimes with a stake involved, can raise enjoyment and camaraderie. However, if you aren't confident enough to bet on your own performance, just play for fun and visit the best mobile casinos around!