Anxiety is the body’s natural reaction to stress, and too much stress can cause major health issues both physically and mentally. As you may know, stress can be caused by a number of factors which are often out of our control. Even though these factors can’t be controlled, we can learn how to control our mind to react better to these events.
In this article, we will take a look at some of the ways in which you can use exercise to calm your anxiety and to once again enjoy your life.
There are many health benefits by participating in Yoga, especially for those suffering from anxiety.
Anxiety can be caused by focusing on negative thoughts. To combat this, you will need to take control of your mind and replace these negative thoughts with positive ones.
At first, Yoga may feel strange and you may feel anxious when trying it for the first few times.
Focusing on your breathing can have a negative effect on some people, so don’t worry this is a normal reaction. Take a break and revisit Yoga when you feel ready.
To calm yourself through Yoga, you should practice breathing exercises. Through these exercises, you can slow your thoughts and calm the mind.
One of the quickest ways of learning Yoga on a budget is by watching YouTube videos at home. However, if you are a beginner you may benefit more by joining a class where a qualified instructor can give you different techniques to help with your situation.
2. Tai Chi
You can think of Tai Chi as a slow martial art that incorporates breathing techniques. Tai Chi has similarities with Yoga but it puts less physical strain on your body which makes it perfect for older adults looking to get rid of anxiety.
There are many different forms of Tai Chi, some of which focus on health while others focus on the art itself. Although more research is needed to be carried out on Tai Chi, many practitioners claim that some of the benefits of practising Tai Chi include improvement of stamina and quality of sleep, joint pain reduction and lowers blood pressure.
Once again, to get started with Tai Chi you could turn to the internet, videos or the book store. But to get the most out of the art, you should look for classes in your local gym or community centre. Tai Chi is budget-friendly because it requires no specialist equipment to get started.
Boxing is one of the best workouts you can do for your body. It burns calories, has functional uses and releases endorphins that can make you feel good.
Boxing is one of those activities which allows you to switch off from the outside world, which can be a reason for being stressed or anxious in the first place.
Hitting a punching bag with force releases endorphins into the body that will make you feel good. These endorphins also relieve tension in your muscles caused by stress.
Boxing also has other qualities which could improve your mood as joining a boxing gym will allow you to meet others and make friends.
Anxiety can be caused by loneliness and fighting with different people a few times a week is more than enough to build up some camaraderie and friendship.
In addition to physical strength and fitness, boxing is a great way to build confidence within yourself. Boxing is tough and getting punched in the face will take some getting used to, but challenging yourself like this will allow you to grow mentally stronger and make it easier to deal with your anxiety issues.
4. Weight Lifting
Weight lifting is an anabolic activity which means that it helps build muscle and releases the feel-good hormone testosterone.
When deciding on a workout routine make sure it includes the following exercises which are known as compound movements:
- Bench press
- Overhead press
- Bent over rows
Compound movements use more than one muscle when you are working out and are tougher to do than isolation movements. Compound movements are known to release testosterone, which will make you feel better.
Weight lifting can help you in two ways: firstly the physical exertion that you are putting your body under will give you a feel-good factor. Secondly, constantly challenging your body to lift a heavier weight over time will allow you to build mental toughness.
5. Circuit training
If you’re a busy person (most anxious people are) you may not have enough time to do some of the above activities. If that is the case, this workout is for you.
Circuit training allows you to incorporate cardio exercise and weight lifting for an intense yet short time period.
Higher intensity training has been shown to release more endorphins than slower state cardio such as walking, so it is perfect for those who want to workout without spending 2 hours in the gym.
A good circuit training routine can last up to 30 minutes and should leave you gasping for air at the end of it. Circuit training will help with your anxiety and it will also give you additional benefits such as improved cardiovascular endurance.
Stress can reduce your quality of life, make you look older than you are, and cause serious health issues like high blood pressure, heart disease and obesity. Stress can also cause depression and snoring. With that comes another set of health issues.
By doing the exercises above, you should be able to manage your stress levels.
Abi Phillips is a lifestyle blogger. When not writing, Abi can be found squatting and deadlifting in the gym.