Ok. Maybe not all things, but a lotttt of things. The other day I woke up feeling horrible. I slept wrong. My neck was sore. I had a headache. And I tossed and turned all throughout the night. That morning, I was in a bad mood. It’s as if I had a negative reaction to every little thing that happened to me. And these were things I expected to happen. Small things. Like the tea kettle going off, alerting me it’s ready to pour my tea. Or an email from my co-worker that I was expecting. These are little things that happen every day. But since I already was in a bad mood, I was reacting that way without even processing what happened. I judged before I gave the moment a chance. And then I went to the gym.
I didn’t want to go to the gym. I find that to be true about 50% of the time these days. But I don’t go to the gym for the pleasure of working hard on my body and sweating. No. I mean I have in the past. But for the most part no. In fact, I go to the gym because of the way it makes me feel afterwards. The feeling of accomplishment. The feeling of overcoming my mind. And the feeling of getting some much overwhelming stresses out. Me going to the gym that morning when everything was going wrong, when I had a sore neck and a headache, and when I really didn’t want to go, I had one of the best turn arounds to my day I could ever have. I went to the gym. I got a little sweat in and did a little heavy lifting. All in all, my whole workout took about 30 minutes. I don’t exercise for long. Unless I’m doing cardio. In which case I’ll go longer. But when lifting weights, I’ve become so efficient that I can usually squeeze everything in about 30-45 minutes. So that day leaned on the quicker side of my workouts.
Afterwards I came home, made myself a great lunch, and got back to work. And I noticed a night and day difference in my attitude, in my energy levels, and in my mood. My headache was gone. My neck pain was nowhere in sight. And I was getting my work done without a fuss. Could this change in mood really just come from exercise?
Of course it did. Let’s consider the alternative. Instead of going to the gym when I didn’t want to, let’s say I gave in to my laziness and scrolled endlessly on social media, or watched TV, or just continued working in a bad mood. I don’t think my headache would’ve gone away magically on its own. I don’t think my neck pain wouldn’t relieved itself on its own. And if those two didn’t change, then there was no chance my mood would just flip to happy neither. There needed to be a change in pace. A wrench in the machine. A disturbance of some kind to get myself out of the funk I was in at the time. And the best thing for that is exercise.
Exercise was the medicine I needed that day. And I see this to be true time and time again. It got my blood flowing properly, relieving me of my headache. My muscles loosened up as I moved them around, getting rid of the neck soreness. And my mood was vastly boosted, thanks to the endorphins from exercising. There’s not many activities out there that can have that positive of an effect on such a range of things.
So, whenever you’re in the dumps, try exercising. If you have any mental or physical stress that needs to be worked out, go work out. Take it easy if need be. Just the act of pushing yourself to go do something is enough to get your mind right. And once you’re physically in the gym, exercising will seem much less strenuous. Take a break and go exercise. Your body and mind will thank you.