Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Exercise is good for you in more ways than one

Having over-indulged on mince pies and turkey over Christmas and with New Year just around the corner, you may be having thoughts that it’s about time you battled that bulge and got back into shape.

The benefits of exercise on our physical condition are well known, but those for our mental health are often overlooked. Exercise releases endorphins which generally make us feel happier and less anxious. Engaging in a moderate amount of physical activity not only improves our mood but also our energy levels, our confidence, body image, and self-esteem which in turn, all lead to an improved quality of life.

However, there is now another reason to exercise that might help to motivate you. New research conducted by scientists in Ireland has reported that physical activity can improve cognitive function by demonstrating that participants performed significantly better on a memory recall task following strenuous exercise. This benefit is thought to be the result of surges in a brain protein after physical activity.

So it would seem that the benefits of exercise are threefold – it improves our physical and psychological health as well as our cognitive functioning. There are now more reasons than ever to join the gym or take up that new exercise class!

If you would like to gain a healthy lifestyle and lose weight then look out for our next blog on coaching for weight management or you can call your local First Psychology centre to find out more about coaching for weight loss.

Edinburgh: 0131-668-1440, www.edinburghtherapy.co.uk
Glasgow: 0141-404-5411, www.glasgowpsychology.co.uk 
Borders: 01896-800-400, www.borderspsychology.co.uk

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