I can say without a doubt that every time I go for a run it makes me feel better mentally. The run tends to clear your mind your and lift your spirits. You finish it feeling great both physically and emotionally. Exercising, and running in particular for me, is a great way to boost your mood. Now there is new scientific evidence that supports this notion.
Research published in the October 2017 issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry reports on the findings of a study conducted on nearly 34,000 Norwegians. Some of the key findings from their research include:
- Exercising just an hour per week gives people the emotional benefits that can help keep depression away.
- Those who are sedentary are at a 44% increased chance of becoming depressed.
- Sedentary lifestyles are becoming the norm around the world, and depression is also increasing.
They report that the mental health benefits of exercising take place after only one hour of exercise per week. Only one hour per week! That's not a lot of time being dedicated to exercise and yet it keeps you better off when it comes to mental health (not to mention your physical health benefits, too). For those who say they don't have time exercise this should be exciting news. You don't have to spend a lot of time per week exercising in order to gain the mental health benefits.
Personally, I run three times per week, and I bike at least two days per week. Sometimes I also add in some hiking, swimming, etc. I try to get exercise these days on 5-6 days per week. It keeps me feeling good, both mentally and physically!