How many times have you reached for a bag of potato chips or a Snickers bar when you’re stressed, depressed, or anxious? Or maybe you just couldn’t stop yourself from continuing to eat even when you knew you were full?
Now, think about how many times you were feeling those exact same feelings, but turned to exercise instead of food? If you’re like most people, the answer is probably not many.
We’ve all done, I’ve done it. We turn to food before exercise as a coping mechanism. We cannot blame ourselves, but we can arm ourselves with the knowledge of the power of exercise.
We tend to overeat and eat the wrong things when we are facing tough times. We rarely overexercise. We don’t exercise at all. BUT, exercise is extremely powerful in changing your mood. In fact, by simply elevating your heart rate and breaking a sweat you can beat stress, lift your mood, fight memory loss, and function at a higher level. Who wouldn’t want all of that?
I have incorporated exercise into my daily routine, and it has been life changing. I like to do it in the morning because I feel more focused for the day, but you can do it whenever you want…the first step is to just do it! I really encourage you to stop and think the next time you are having a bad day or are feeling down and just want to grab the junk food. Try going for a brisk walk or jog, go hiking, play tag with the kids…something to get you moving. See how you feel afterwards. I think you may be surprised.