It’s well known that exercise releases endorphins that enhance your mood, and many people utilize this tactic to help combat their stress when they’re hit with a bad day. Fitness can help calm the mind and allow it to re-focus, and while any form of exercise is beneficial after a hard time, some types will help you reach a state of tranquility more than others. If you’re used to resorting to bad habits, such as eating comfort food, to deal with your stress, you might want to give these relaxing and rejuvenating techniques a try first.
After a hard day, a long walk allows you to clear your mind, slow down, and pace yourself. Whether you want to enjoy the chirping of the birds and take a minute to appreciate the scenery, or you want to put in some music and go on autopilot, a walk is a healthy way to zone out from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and make the transition into your own world where you can hear your own thoughts. Often times, a slow stroll can help you look at things in a different light and return to a problem with a realized solution. Regular walking also has many health benefits; weight maintenance, bone strengthening, and reduced risk of cardiovascular disease are other advantages that walking offers.
Yoga has been used as a stress-reliever for years, and it’s often seen as a blend of physical activity and meditation. With its relaxing breathing and posture techniques, yoga works to transform your body by improving your flexibility and muscle strength as well as lowering your risk of high blood pressure. Many studies have shown that practicing yoga on a consistent basis does wonders to relieve body tension and mental anxiety. Most community rec centers offer beginning yoga classes, and there are numerous beginning level lessons taught online for free as well; with all the available resources, along with testimonies to back up the hype, there shouldn’t be much holding you back from at least giving it a try.
Similar to yoga, swimming helps reduce stress by relieving the body of tension and allowing the mind to slow down its rapid thoughts and focus on the physical. Many swimmers testify that a good workout in the water helps them feel refreshed and hold a higher level of self-esteem. Swimming is also a great option if you have poor joint health or back problems as the physical exertion experienced in the water is smooth and easy on the body.
Dancing is an excellent way to reduce stress as it allows you to take your mind off of your worries, and instead, engage with the music and find your own internal rhythm. Dancing gets your heart rate up and contributes to overall toning of the body as well as improves your balance and coordination. You can take a class that aims to teach the basics of a specific type of dance, such as salsa or rumba, or you can let loose and just move your body to the music. Participating in a form of loose creativity is a healthy way to temporarily take your mind off serious matters that are causing you to feel stressed out and overworked, and after your tension is reduced, you can return to the issues with a more focused and confident approach.
Physical activity is not only a healthy way to maintain your physical health, but it’s also a useful tool in fine tuning your mind as well; regular exercise helps you feel a greater sense of peace by releasing endorphins that contribute to your overall mood and allowing yourself to shift your focus to something aside from your worries, and taking a proactive approach to improving your personal health helps increase your sense of self-worth. All in all, treating a bad day with a shift of walking, yoga, swimming, or dancing will help you ease your anxiety and end the day on an improved note.