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Exercise and Mental Wellbeing

18 March 2019

Exercise and Mental Wellbeing article

Exercise and Mental Wellbeing

With Changes Bristol gearing up for the upcoming Bristol 10k and Bristol Half Marathon let’s take a look at how exercise can play a supportive role in battling depression and anxiety.

The mind and body are intricately connected and recent research has shown that getting as little as 20 - 30 minutes of exercise per day can reduce a person’s risk of developing depression by 1/3 and not only is it beneficial in keeping depression at bay, but it is extremely helpful to those already suffering with the condition.

Exercise improves self-esteem, while setting achievable goals and getting outside with other people in a social environment increases mental wellbeing.

Physical activity releases powerful feel-good endorphins into the body, that can leave you feeling positive and energized, and mentally alert. These natural chemicals also act as painkillers, reducing the sensation of pain in the body.

There are many different types of exercise to choose from and it’s important to pick something that feels good to you. Maybe a gentle bike ride or walk around your local park is your thing, or perhaps a hardcore gym session or a game of tennis with your friends seems more tempting. Whatever you choose, if you move your body you will not only be helping yourself physically, but mentally too.

If you’re inspired by the thought of exercising for your mental health please sign up to one of our Sports and Challenge Events and help raise awareness of mental wellbeing support in Bristol. You can join the Changes Bristol team for the Bristol 10k on the 5th of May – a great event for all skill levels, or if you prefer being on two wheels, The NightRider challenge is coming up on the 6th of July.

Written by Changes Bristol Communication Volunteer - Lucy Organ