SAD: How Exercise Can Ease The Winter Blues
In the summer it can be a lot easier to get up, and out exercising with the sun shining in your window every morning. When the sunshine disappears come winter, it can be difficult to find the motivation to get up and go for a run, hit the gym, or head to a morning yoga class. This lack of motivation can be due to seasonal affective disorder (SAD).
Exercise is a great way to not only stay fit and healthy, it’s also a great way to get endorphins and serotonin into your system. These chemicals, in the simplest terms, make you happy! So, it’s easy to see how a lack of willingness to exercise in the winter may lead to you feeling a bit down.
Even if you aren’t a regular exerciser in the summer, if you find yourself suffering with SAD, exercise can be a great natural way to help counteract the symptoms.
Some ways you can exercise in the winter to help with SAD:
Soak Up Sunshine (While you can…)
They are rear, but some days you wake up to a lovely crisp winter’s morning. While the sun is shining and skies are blue, it can still be very chilly. If taking to the roads for a morning run, ensure to wrap up warm! It may be unappealing to get outdoors when it’s cold but remember, some sun is better than no sun! You can boost your vitamin D levels, and get those happy chemicals flowing!
Often during winter, we are leaving and returning to the house when it’s dark outside. If this is the case, bring your running shoes to work and use your lunch hour to get in some exercise. A light walk around outside for even 15 mins can improve your mood immensely.
If you have a friend who wants to stick at or get into exercising during the winter months, buddy up! Having someone depend on you can give you the motivation needed to get out and get it done! Whether you go for a morning jog, or hit the gym together, collabing on exercise is great motivation. You can also boost each other’s confidence, and try new classes together!
Keep A Healthy Mind
It’s all well and good keeping your body healthy, but it’s important to focus on your mind as well. A great way to combine physical and mental health? Yoga!
Not only does yoga help you keep toned and fit, but it teaches you the inner workings of your mind. This is great if you feel you may be experiencing SAD, as you will learn to identify and cope with feelings.
Take It Easy & Enjoy!
If you are starting out exercising as a way of helping deal with SAD, it’s best to start with low impact exercise. It’s also a good idea to pursue something you enjoy. Grab a friend and join a dance class, you get a great workout and will have a great laugh doing so!