How Exercise Affects The Brain

Regular exercise and physical activities are great for our bodies, as they can increase endurance, lower the resting heart rate, burn calories, turn fat into muscle, and decrease the risk of many diseases such as diabetes. But there are also plenty of mental and psychological benefits to an exercise routine including improvements to self-esteem, memory, and quality of sleep.

Discover the many ways in which regular exercise can improve cognitive function and everyday life. As little as ten minutes of exercise a day just might make the difference.

Exercise Affects Self-Esteem


The effects of working out and exercising have proven to increase self-esteem in many ways. When one is physically active, one of the short-term benefits is the exercise enhances their mood and gives more of a positive outlook, which temporarily increases their self-esteem.

The long-term benefits of regular exercise are it makes the individual feel good about their abilities and physique they can achieve through hard work and dedication, which in turn increases their self-esteem. There are many ways to successfully use exercise to enhance self-esteem such as exercising with a friend, creating realistic goals, tracking progress, and rewarding oneself for their accomplishments.

Next, learn what physical activity can do to stress and anxiety.

Physical Activity Reduces Stress & Anxiety


Everyone gets stressed from time to time, but it has been reported an average of seven out of ten adults in the United States experience stress or anxiety daily, and most of those who experience stress and anxiety say it interferes with their lives. Although there are many effective methods for managing stress and anxiety, getting regular exercise is considered the best.

Exercise and physical activity release endorphins, which are hormones in the brain and nervous system responsible for relieving feelings stress and anxiety, and increasing feelings of pleasure, euphoria, and pain relief. Low levels of endorphins are associated with the opposing effects such as stress, anxiety, physical and emotional pain, and addiction.

Now that you know that exercise can reduce feelings of stress and anxiety, keep reading to learn what it can do for memory.

Exercise Can Improve Memory & Reduce The Risk Of Cognitive Decline


As we age, it is inevitable that some of us will experience cognitive decline while others may not. Learning new information may become more of a challenge, but the risk of cognitive decline can be reduced by becoming more physically active.

A study published in 2011 in an issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America proved that seniors who walk for thirty minutes, three times a week increased the volume of their hippocampus which improved the function of their memory. Through many studies, it has been proven just thirty minutes of light cardio a few times a week can increase memory and reduce the risk of cognitive decline.

Continue reading to learn what regular exercise can do for your libido.

Exercise Can Boost Libido


Exercise can benefit many aspects of life, but did you know it can actually boost your libido? Physiologically, libido is increased due to better muscle strength, increased endurance and flexibility, and increased blood flow, though doesn’t end there.

Males who exercise one hour a day, three to five times a week may experience more frequent erections, better bone density, as well as increased strength and sexual urges. In contrast, due to higher testosterone levels from working out, women may experience intensified arousal, higher energy levels, improved strength, and increased sexual urges. However, it is important to note too much exercise may produce the opposite effect.

With this in mind, keep reading to discover what an exercise routine can do to improve your quality of sleep.

Better Quality Of Sleep


Thirty-five to forty percent of adults in the United States claim to have issues with falling asleep or daytime sleepiness. However, one can achieve a better quality of sleep if they begin a regular exercise routine.

A national study composed of over 2,600 men and women over the age of eighteen, determined 150 minutes of exercise each week presented a sixty-five percent improvement in the quality of sleep. Similarly, 150 minutes of exercise gave the individuals more energy throughout their day and increased alertness. As little as ten minutes of aerobic workouts each day, like cycling or walking can drastically improve the quality of sleep.