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6 ways exercise can help you cope with stress

Exercise helps with stress, as well as mental health challenges like depression, post traumatic stress disorder and anxiety.

That’s because exercise releases a bunch of happy hormones, and decreases the stress hormones that had been racing around your body. It also improves your physical health and ability to sleep well.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, it isn’t possible to get to the gym – but there are lots of other ways to get moving during this time.

Go online

Whether you want to do strength exercises, a HIIT workout, stick with a gym schedule, or do a gentler yoga or Pilates class, there’s something online that’s perfect for you.

The best part of going online is that you can do these exercises at your own pace, and for a length of time that fits into your day.

Get outside when possible

Fresh air is one of life’s great stress relievers. Take your device into the backyard for a change of scenery, or get outside (if you can do so under the current health guidelines) for a run or walk.

Find the things you used to love

If you’re not feeling great, it’s time to find some exercise that you find fun. You might be able to go back to the types of exercise you used to love, or try something new to see if it feels good.

Take small steps

When life is stressful or really busy, doing big chunks of exercise can feel a bit much. That’s okay. Doing a little bit of exercise is still very effective in boosting your mental and physical wellbeing.

Make time to exercise

If life is busy at the moment, it can feel difficult to fit in some exercise. Do what you can, whether it’s a little bit of time each day or a few times a week. The benefits will make you glad you made the time.

When stress, worry or mental health challenges are hanging around, exercise can be a great way to feel better.