You’ve had a really long day and you’re dog-tired, your head is spinning from everything going on at work and in your personal life, you’re even hungry. So, you walk in the door, put down your briefcase and change into your …
What? Yes, this is exactly the time when you need to work out most. Exercise is the soothing solace your mind needs to clear and process everything with which you’re dealing. When you workout, your body is able to release stress, produce endorphins and recharge.
The benefits of relieving stress are probably fairly obvious. From lowering your cortisol levels (those pesky hormones that make your body hold on to fat) to better digestion and assimilation of nutrients, stress reduction should always be a priority. In addition to boosting your immune system through stress relief, exercise also releases another welcome friend, endorphins.
Endorphins are chemicals released by your brain in response to exercise, certain foods and even pleasant activities. Endorphins have a balance sheet tipped in their favor. They help you feel happy and intensify pleasure, they regulate your appetite, ramp up your immune system and, remarkably, even lower stress levels. These mood-enhancing “natural opiates” even function as an anti-depressant.
And, guess what? Just when you’re low on energy, expending energy through exercise is exactly what you need to recharge. Contrary to popular belief, moving your muscles causes your body to create energy, not deplete it. Research consistently proves that exercise causes your body to rise to the challenge with increased levels of energy, reduced overall fatigue and a sharper, more focused mind.
The bottom line: it’s a win-win when it comes to exercise. Not only will you feel great and energized after a workout, the residual positive effects of gym-time well spent will spill over into many other areas of your life, including increased energy and optimal health.
So, what are you doing again for Happy Hour after work? Oh, right, you’re headed to the gym!