The Relationship Between Exercise and Mental Health

Everyone knows how important exercise is for our physical health, however, many underestimate, or simply neglect, the importance of exercise for maintaining a healthy mental state.

For that reason, Studio Pulse Wynnum is here to help you understand the relationship between exercise and mental health.

Those who include exercise in their everyday life, like reformer pilates Wynnum for example, are at a lower risk of suffering from mental illness and report having better emotional wellbeing and mental health.

Surprising but true, research shows that exercise has almost the same effect as psychological treatments, including cognitive behavioral therapy, and antidepressants for those who have mild depression.

But, how does exercise affect us mentally?

The relationship between exercise and mental health can be quite easily explained. Exercise stimulates the production of chemicals in the brain responsible for improving mood. Plus, it pumps blood to the brain which improves your cognitive skills.

Additionally, exercise increases the part of the brain responsible for memory called the hippocampus and improves connections between the brain and nerve cells which helps to boost memory and protects your brain from diseases.

Simply put, exercise makes us feel better, and makes our body happy. Not only will exercise improve your mood, alertness, and concentration, it can also help to increase your motivation levels.

The following is a list of how exercise can positively impact you and your lifestyle:

  • Improves Sleep: a good night’s sleep regulates mood.
  • Exercise boosts self-esteem, coping abilities, and sense of control.
  • When exercising you forget about the negative things in your life and can allow you to gain new perspectives.
  • Exercise provides new opportunities to socialise and meet people.
  • Exercise changes the levels of serotonin, endorphins, and stress hormones in your brain.
  • Your energy levels increase while exercising.
  • Exercise is a great form of stress and anger release.
  • Exercise makes you feel relaxed by decreasing muscle tension.

How Much Exercise do we Need?

Luckily, to give your mental health a boost, you don’t really have to spend hours in the gym or jump straight into strenuous exercise. According to the Australian Government, around 3 hours of moderate exercise or 2 hours of strenuous exercise per week is what we should aim for. Even if that includes 1 moderate bike ride, 1 reformer pilates class and 1 brisk walk per week… that is more than enough! Especially as a starting point.

Pulse offers a fresh and unique opportunity for those embarking on a quest for greater physical, mental, or spiritual fulfillment.

So, all you need to do to ensure you keep both physically and mentally healthy is to contact Studio Pulse Wynnum and get in touch with the team to find out what class would best suit your needs.

5 Tricks to Boost your Energy Levels

Due to the busy lives many of us lead, lots of people report feeling tired and drained on a regular basis. Often, this fatigue is a result of lifestyle choices, in which case you can try a variety of things to improve this.

That’s why Studio Pulse Wynnum – the ultimate pilates and reformer pilates expert in Queensland, has come up with the following list of tricks you can try to give your energy levels a boost.

So, read on to find out how to say ‘goodbye’ to fatigue and increase energy levels naturally:

Get Enough Sleep

First and foremost, sleep deprivation is one of the most common side effects of a busy lifestyle. People are constantly trying to keep work, family, and social life on track which is often easier to do with a little less sleep. However, this lack of sleep results in tiredness and feeling drained. Something that people underestimate is how exercise can improve your sleep. Even just a 30-minute session of reformer pilates for instance will help you to get a good night’s sleep.

Reduce Stress

Another efficient way to boost your energy levels is by reducing stress levels. Again, people with busy lifestyles often go through periods of feeling anxious and overworked. So, if you’ve been experiencing episodes of low concentration, racing thoughts, and breathing difficulties, you may be experiencing stress, which can not only affect your mind but your physical health too.

So, in order to improve your energy levels, trying to avoid stress can help – easier said than done we know. However, one of the most popular stress-relieving activities is exercise. Luckily, at Studio Pulse, we offer a great range classes to suit your needs and time-constraints.

Be Active

Without a shadow of a doubt, we are all aware of how regular exercise is important for our physical health. But, being active is actually as equally important for our mental health – especially if you lead a relatively sedentary lifestyle. You may be thinking, I’m not fit enough yet to take up any intense exercise activities, however, low-intensity workouts will do just fine. Indeed, all you need to do is contact our team and find out which class best suits your needs and fitness levels.

Stay Hydrated

You probably already know that our bodies are made of 55 – 75% water, depending on your age. So it’s no surprise that hydration plays an important role in brain function, mood, and energy. Also, since we lose water via sweat and urine daily, we must make up for this loss and drink enough water to stay hydrated. Otherwise, if our body is dehydrated our energy levels will immediately drop and make us feel drained. So, make sure to drink enough water throughout the day, not only when you’re in your reformer pilates class and exercising but throughout the day as well.

Socialise

Last but not least, being social is crucial for maintaining a good mood and balanced mental health. On the other hand, if you are socially isolated you are at a higher risk of suffering from low mood. In order to kill two birds with one stone, so to speak, join up to Studio Pulse Wynnum to stay social, active and maintain healthy sleeping habits.

 

Comparison will Kill You

Regardless of how much we achieve in our life, it’s almost too easy to fall into the trap of comparing ourselves to others. After all, we’re only human. In some cases, comparison can be be useful as a form of inspiration. However, we suggest you only compare yourself to a prior version of yourself. For example, if this time last year you were more motivated, or perhaps visiting your loved ones more, or a lot fitter than you are today, that should be your motivation to do better.

So, if fitness or health is a concern of yours, Studio Pulse Wynnum offers classes to cater to all levels of fitness. Contact us today to chat about your fitness goals.

Let’s explore why it is that we compare ourself to others:

Why do We Compare Ourselves to Others?

Namely, we compare ourselves to others for many different human reasons, but surprisingly not because comparison makes us feel happier, smarter, or more productive. It is both a human reaction and emotion which we can’t control. However, we can control what we do with it… whether we choose to let the emotions control us or whether we decide to control them.

Not to mention, the world we live in makes it extremely easy to fall into the trap. Just look around you: the billboards, newsfeeds, TV screens, social media – they are all full of ‘twisted’ conventional norms that are designed in such a way to make us feel we have to change and fit. After all, if we didn’t feel like we had to change, we wouldn’t purchase the products they are dangling in front of us. It’s no wonder we feel like we aren’t enough. But, remember – we are more than good enough just the way we are!

Comparison Shortcomings

As aforementioned, comparing ourselves to other people has many shortcomings including the following:

  • An unfair game – comparisons aren’t fair because we tend to compare our weaknesses to other’s strengths.
  • Takes a lot of valuable time – we should spend that time on something that makes us happy and fulfilled instead of comparing ourselves to other people.
  • Uniqueness cannot be compared – we are all different and unique individuals, therefore comparison isn’t logical at all.
  • No benefits gained – when comparing to others we don’t gain anything, we just lose time, joy, energy, and motivation.
  • It’s an everlasting game – there will always be someone else to compare to or some other feature to focus on.
  • It results in resentment – not only do we gain nothin from it, comparison actually results in resentment both towards others and ourselves.

Simple Tips to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others

Now that you know that there aren’t any positives to comparison, let’s have a look at some simple ways to stop indulging in our weaknesses:

  • Do a social media detox – being bombarded with people living ‘perfect lives’ on social media won’t help, so take control and have a detox… you won’t regret it!
  • Be thankful for what you already have – if you constantly focus on what you don’t have, you will never be satisfied. Instead, be grateful for what you have, especially for your family and friends.
  • Accept imperfection – realizing that no one is perfect (even though it may seem so on social media) is the first step towards loving yourself including strengths and weaknesses and successes and shortcomings.
  • Regular Exercise – Exercise has a range of benefits, one of them being clearer outlook on life, and increased motivation levels.. just what you need to focus on yourself and not others! Just a couple of reformer pilates classes per week will do wonders!

 

Our team at Pulse hope you found this article helpful. And, if you want to focus your energy on something beneficial instead of comparing yourself to others, like reformer pilates, or yoga classes, contact Studio Pulse Wynnum today!

How to Love Your Body (regardless of your size)

The truth is, body confidence has nothing to do with your size, the numbers on the scale, body fat percentage, BMI, or waist circumference. It is how you feel in your own skin and ultimately loving your body regardless of its size. Sounds easy right? Well, not exactly. Loving your body is a difficult task for many of us and can take years and years of knowledge and learning experiences to truly achieve.

At Studio Pulse Wynnum – Wynnum’s newest Reformer Pilates Studio – we offer a friendly community with top quality instructors and classes which cater to all levels of fitness.

1. Be Grateful for what your Body does for You

First and foremost, it’s important to recognise that your body does some pretty amazing things on a daily basis: getting out of bed in the morning, breathing air into your lungs, tasting amazing flavours, talking, walking, eating. All of that and much more thanks to the 60 trillion cells that make up a complete whole – your body. Your body, regardless of its size, gives you the chance to experience life.

2. It’s about how you Feel, not how you Look

You are going to feel better if you are following a healthy lifestyle, but it’s about how you feel within yourself rather than how you look in the mirror. Namely, there’s no universal body size that we can all strive to reach. We are all made differently. So, while it might be easy for certain people to stay really thin, it may be a lot harder for you to reach the same size because you have different genes. When we follow a relatively healthy diet, exercise regularly, get lots of sleep and drink plenty of water, naturally we are going to feel better (and probably look better too). But it is crucial that you concentrate on how you feel, rather than how you look. So, ask yourself the below questions:

  • Do I have lots of energy during the day?
  • Do I sleep well?
  • Am I lethargic?
  • Am I passing stools regularly?
  • Is my urine clear?
  • Am I eating 5 veg and 2 fruit each day?
  • Do I have unhealthy cravings?
  • Is my skin clear?
  • Do I get sick a lot? Do I suffer from headaches or any other ongoing health issues?

3. Exercise for Fun rather than to Simply Lose Weight

Last but not least, when it comes to exercise, it’s vital to think of it from a different perspective. Exercising shouldn’t be a chore, nor should you dread it. And, if the exercise you are doing makes you feel this way, find something that you prefer! There’s a lot of different types of exercise, so shop around until you find something that you enjoy. Additionally, rather than focusing on the weight benefits of exercise, focus on some of the other benefits: decreased risk of heart issues, decreased risk of cancer, decreased risk of diabetes, increased energy levels, reduced stress-levels, healthier organs, decreased circulation of toxins in the body and of course the list goes on! Exercise isn’t just a weight loss and body-shaping tool, it is actually a great way to love and accept your body, regardless of its size.

The bottom line is that we are all built completely differently, and what works for someone else, might not work for you. Remember to keep things in perspective, avoid comparison, practice positive self-talk and embrace you in all that you are because (corny we know), there is indeed, only one you. Of course, you can always strive for better and you should, it’s a healthy mantra to live by, which we support wholeheartedly. However, don’t put too much pressure on yourself and above all else, enjoy the journey. At the end of the day it’s not all about the destination, it’s about the hurdles, the set-backs and how you got back up after being pushed down.

To join our reformer pilates class, don’t hesitate and contact us today!