If you are feeling depressed or when you are in a bad mood, the typical thing to do is either to overindulge in ice cream or drink alcohol. While these things may give you an instant sense of relief, the sugar rush and downer effect will only be temporary. Wait a few hours and you’ll probably find yourself feeling much worse than before – bloated or with a nasty hangover! So, what can you do to ward off your depression? Before popping those anti-depressant tablets, consider a natural, more lasting method that will help you feel better and more revitalized… exercise!

Exercise is an amazing activity that benefits everyone. It’s a great way to maintain a physically healthy body, build stronger muscles, and lose weight. But aside from the physical benefits, exercising actually contributes to a person’s mental health. When you exercise, you can build your self-confidence and also lessen symptoms of anxiety, depression, and panic attacks. This has actually been proven scientifically with many studies showing how exercise is great for brain health. When you exercise, you release endorphins, which are the hormones responsible for your good mood and positive sense of well-being.

To give you some ideas of workouts that can get rid of your bad mood, try out these suggestions below.

Calisthenics / Bodyweight Training

You don’t need to go to the gym or attend a fitness class to start working out. With calisthenics, you can start working out right now, wherever you are! Calisthenics, also known as bodyweight training, does not require any equipment or specialized venue. You only need to use your own bodyweight as a form of resistance in performing a variety of exercises.

If you are feeling down and you need a quick picker-upper, go for fun, calisthenics exercises to get your blood flowing and become more alert. Here are some examples:

Yoga

A lot of times, feeling depressed is brought about by the many stressors around you encounter every day. A bad day at work, financial strains, and dealing with a difficult family member are  just some examples that can ruin your good mood. If you are experiencing these situations, it will be ideal for you to seek relaxation through yoga.

Yoga is a low-impact exercise that can benefit those who do not have the energy to engage in a more strenuous exercise. For a non-yoga practitioner, assuming different poses may seem like a useless workout, but if you actually try it, you’ll find that it can help stretch out your muscles bringing relief to your body and improving the flow of oxygen in your blood.

Yoga also serves as a form of meditation that helps you become more mindful of yourself and of your environment. When you take some time to slow down and clear your mind, it can free you up from your negative thoughts and this could help you concentrate on the positive things you should be thankful for.

Aqua Aerobics

This is another low-impact exercise that is unique but at the same time, it’s still very easy to do. The added element of being submerged in water makes it more fun and believe it or not, water serves as added resistance so you actually burn more calories. If you are self conscious about working out, this is also perfect for you because your body is submerged during the workout.

Kickboxing

It is not uncommon for people who are depressed to harbor feelings of anger, resentment, and stress. If you feel that your depression is caused by bottling up all these negative emotions, then what could help is for you to release all of these pent-up feelings. Instead of sulking alone or shouting at the people around you, enroll in a kickboxing class.

Use all your repressed emotions to power up your punches and your kicks. By practicing kickboxing, you will learn how to overcome challenges and realize that you are a strong person. This can build your self-esteem, develop your willpower, and resolve confidence problems that you might  have. Of course, it does not hurt that you’ll have amazing arms, tighter abs, and toned legs as well!

Zumba

Many people underestimate the power of Zumba. Some people think that it is not a serious workout while others get intimidated that it is a dance workout. However, the reality is, this Latin dance inspired workout is a great cardio exercise as it burn mega calories. You can burn between 400-600 calories an hour doing Zumba.

Even if you are a non-dancer, the idea is not really to follow the steps accurately because chances are, half of the people with you in class are non-dancers, too!  What makes it so fun are the exaggerated movements combined with the Latin dance music that will definitely make you energize and stir up your enthusiasm to move with the rest of the class. The added element of music is another mood-booster that will lift up your mind and your spirit.

 Author Bio:

Rebecca Smith started calisthenics at age 26 as a means to lose weight and tone her body. After completing her first successful muscle up, the amazing feeling inspired her to train further and become a full-time calisthenics instructor. Rebecca also holds a Management Degree and a Diploma in Nutrition.

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