Having a Bad Day? Exercise it Away!
We’ve all been there. Your car broke down. One of your kids is sick. Your boss chewed you at work. Or maybe you just woke up on the wrong side of the bed.
Anyway you slice it, bad days can happen out of the blue and you probably feel there’s nothing you can do to make the day better. However, that simply isn’t true. A little known, but important study, has shown that just a single exercise session can cause in an improvement in one’s mood.
This study looked at three different groups: non-exercisers, regular exercisers, and ultramarathon runners. Each group had their mood measured in questionnaire before the exercise session.
Each group was then instructed to exercise at a moderate intensity (light to steady jog) on the treadmill for 30 minutes. At the conclusion of 30 minutes, each person’s mood was measured again.
All three groups showed improvements in their moods after exercising. The regular exercisers showed an even greater improvement, which suggests that exercising more frequently could lead to an even greater mood enhancement.
So, the next time you’re having one of those days, hop on the treadmill for 30 minutes. It will make your day better. 30 minutes of your time is a small investment if it turns that frown upside down.
*Reference: Hoffman, M. D., & Hoffman, D. R. (2008). Exercisers achieve greater exercise-induced mood enhancement than non-exercisers. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 89, 358-363