Bad days are days spent on the couch or in bed, curled up and unmoving. Moving your body when you feel all stressed and gloomy can be a huge effort. Every muscle in your body is probably rebelling against you. But, you need to do something about that gloominess so it doesn’t pull you down entirely and stop you from enjoying your day.
Exercising is a great way to boost your mood and deal with stress. Moving your body the right way can give you the mental boost you need while improving your physical wellbeing.
During exercise, your body produces hormones and neurotransmitters like endorphins that make you feel good. While it’s tiring, you will feel more relaxed, especially after releasing all that pent-up stress and emotions in your muscles. It will also give you a different sense of accomplishment that can boost your self-confidence and wellbeing.
When you’re feeling sad and unmotivated, here are some exercises you can try to improve your mood so you can power through the day again.
The thought of yoga can be a little intimidating, mainly because this exercise seems to require a different level of flexibility and strength. However, yoga isn’t only about enhancing flexibility; it certainly has many more benefits than you think.
Yoga is a body-mind exercise that brings you awareness of your body. It’s a low-impact exercise focusing on one’s breathing, meditation, and posture. Depending on the type of yoga you practice, it can provide you with an aerobic workout or simply focus on teaching you how to relax, release tension, and stretch tight muscles. During breathing exercises, more oxygen flows to the brain, prompting it to release chemicals that calm your nerves and boost your overall mood.
By doing yoga, you can improve your physical fitness, relieve muscle pain, improve heart health, help you sleep better, and relax as you connect your mind with your body. Different yoga exercises you can try depending on your fitness level, goals, and needs. However, beginners must consider getting an instructor or joining a class to get proper guidance on performing the exercises before they decide to do it in their own time.
It will be challenging at first, but the benefits will be worth it. Plus, yoga can be performed almost anywhere as long as it’s a comfortable place, like in your house, personal office space, or outdoors.
2. Green Exercise
How about a change of view this time? You can try a green exercise. Use the power of nature to make you feel good. Getting in touch with nature can bring out your happy hormones, keep you calm, and reduce the loneliness you feel. When you’re working in the office or stuck in your house, head outdoors to breathe in that fresh air while looking at the greenery or the calming waves of the sea.
During break time, find a pleasant environment like city parks, gardens, or rivers where you can walk, jog, run, or just sit and do some breathing exercises. It doesn’t require much time; just 5 to 15 minutes is enough to make you feel good and improve your energy to help you feel motivated to finish your daily goals. You can also do your whole exercise outside to reap even better benefits.
If you’re feeling a little more adventurous or have more free time, mountain hiking is also an excellent option to connect with nature.
3. Tai Chi
This traditional Chinese exercise significantly strengthens the upper and lower extremities while building the back and abdominal core muscles. Much like yoga, tai chi can improve flexibility and balance. But that’s not all; learning and doing tai chi can benefit your mental health.
Tai chi is a beginner-friendly exercise that uses repetitive movements and proper breathing routines to prompt self-healing. The posture flows release energy blockages in the body. The gentle exercises and organized movements make your brain release endorphins that can significantly improve your psychological well being, enhance your mood, and reduce stress and anxiety.
You can look up videos made by professionals online or hire an instructor. If you can’t go out, try enrolling in a virtual class in your own time to learn the basic postures and movements before you try the more complex ones.
Music plus exercise, what’s more to ask for, right? Music alone is an effective stress reliever, but pairing it with moving your body can help you release all that negative energy. Choose your favorite song and move your body to the beat, or do your usual exercise routines with upbeat music to motivate you to finish your sets.
Dancing is a good workout involving all your muscles and limbs, and depending on the dance type and intensity, it can help you lose weight and build muscles. Not only does dancing help with improving your physical wellbeing, but it can also improve mental health and bust your stress away.
What’s more, you can attend dance classes to connect with people. Gloominess can worsen with loneliness and isolation, so it’s not bad to surround yourself with people once in a while. You never know; you might find a good support system from the people you meet in class. Let their energy influence you and you will feel so much better.
5. Mindful breathing
While yoga and tai chi involve proper breathing techniques, they also include other exercise routines. If you’re really not feeling it and your body feels too heavy to move, you can try mindful breathing. Doing some breathing can help you reflect on your current state, what makes you feel this way, and how you can bounce back from that feeling.
Find a quiet and comfortable space in your house or head to a peaceful place in nature. Focus your attention on your breathing, the way your lungs expand and contract when you inhale and exhale. Feel the air enter and leave you. Block the noise of the outside world and focus on meditating. The natural rhythm and flow can give you mindfulness and release your worries and stress at the moment.
You can slowly learn to involve other techniques in your practice from just doing the basic breathing.
Exercise can indeed give you holistic improvement and wellness. Let your body move to give you the push to finish the day on a good note. However, you mustn’t start anything without proper planning. Ignorance of appropriate measures may end up doing you more harm than good. Do what you can do at the moment. Don’t force yourself. Life should be you at your own pace.