Exercise, Depression & Feeling Good


photoI had an unbelievably busy weekend, and my motivation to do anything this week – from making breakfast to making my bed – is at an equally unbelievable low ebb. 

As I sat at my desk yesterday, making a half-hearted attempt to straighten things up, I ran across a piece I tore out of USA Today last month.  The title: Short workouts lift depression.

I don’t think I’m depressed (at least in the clinical sense) but as I re-read the article, I realized what I needed to do to lift myself out of my ennui.Get active.

The study reported in the December 2005 journal Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise (from the American College of Sports Medicine) showed that depressed people who walked on a treadmill for 30 minutes reported feeling more vigorous and had a greater sense of psychological well-being for up to an hour after the workout. 

The group who exercised was compared to a group who sat quietly for 30 minutes.  The quiet group did report reduced negative feelings such as tension, depression, anger and fatigue.But it was the exercise group who said they felt good after being active.The study was considered notable because it is among the first to show that exercise can have a positive effect on depression right away.

I knew that.But it’s easy to forget.  So I’m closing now.I have to go take a walk. If walking doesn’t appeal to you, maybe some of these ideas about winter fitness will.

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