We all have been victims of office stress and this stress seems never ending. Daily targets/deadlines, meetings, presentations, reviews etc. has become a custom of our daily office lives and it certainly increases stress levels. Also, travelling or driving your own vehicle adds to stress especially if it’s metro city traffic. So, since early morning till late evening we experience stress cycles, at times these cycles are really strong and at other times bit weak but there is a constant pressure of stress on all of us.
As our lifestyle has become so fast paced we can’t run away from stress rather shall try to manage it or works towards minimizing its negative effects on our health.
Exercise and balanced nutrition are few key factors which can help you fight stress. But we literally ignore both the facts as they are not on our priority list. We wait to get an advice from doctor to start with exercise routine or eating well, that’s the logic which is widespread these days especially in India.
How exercise helps managing stress?
Exercise not only helps us grow physically but mentally too. You get strong each day while exercising; lot of body adaptations takes place which actually help you grow as a person. The only fight in our life is to take out time for regular exercise but once you start seeing changes in your body it doesn’t seem difficult.
Regular exercisers are well equipped with a strong mechanism to fight stress. Their response to stress is different from a non-exerciser and research also proves that. A research was done amongst a group of health men and women. The researcher measured heart rate, blood pressure, cortisol, and self-reported mood before and at repeated times after the tasks. Individuals who reported physical exercise at least once per week exhibited lower heart rate at rest than non-exercisers, but the groups did not differ in their cardiovascular responses to the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST). Level of habitual exercise did not influence self-reported mood before the tasks, but non-exercisers reported a greater decline in positive affect after the TSST in comparison to exercisers. These findings provide modest support for claims that regular exercise protects against the negative emotional consequences of stress, and suggest that exercise has beneficial effects in healthy individuals.( Research link: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4013452/)
Exercise boosts mood and its ability to release endorphin helps makes it a natural stress reducer or buster. Apart from this, it also helps your mind stay away from stressful thoughts as you concentration gets focused on performing a particular set of exercise efficiently. So, one can take exercise as a form of active meditation which has a calming effect on both the body and mind.
When you exercise regularly, your brain gets conscious about eating healthy & nutritious which in turn helps you fight or curb your cravings for comfort sugary/junk foods which usually arise when you experience high stress levels. So, in turn helps you stay within your calorie limit.
Honestly speaking, exercise is your best friend; it supports and prepares you for those times when others may not be with you. It strengthens your body’s internal system and helps you cope up well with negative effects of stress.
About the Author : Lucky Gaur is an INFS Certified Fitness and Nutrition Consultant and a Diploma holder in Naturopathy & Yogic Science, All India Nature Cure Federation. The views expressed in the article are his personal.
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