In the exercise context, when you think of mood and tension, you think of anxiety and depression. Millions of people suffer from one form or another of anxiety and depression.
The fitness boom has been boosted by advocates of the mood-tranquilizing benefits of regular exercise. More than 3/4 of primary physicians polled regularly prescribed exercise to depressed or anxious patients.
Personal (anecdotal) testimonials rave about how exercise helps you feel better emotionally afterwards, and now have been replaced by solid research that confirms this. The overwhelming consensus is that you get a mood lift when you exercise.
The actual mood lift you get from exercise may only last for a few hours, then tapers down to a more generalized feeling of well-being. By boosting your mood through exercise, you gain better self-control over your moods. You learn what you need to do to control your emotions. And the "high" you get is completely natural.
When you're stressed and anxious, your body produces chemicals in the "fight or flight" response, like adrenaline and cortisol. But stress hormones can also break down your body and burn you out when the "fight or flight" response is chronic. These chemicals have nowhere to dissipate, so they keep building up in your body, causing long-term damage. Exercise is another form of stress, which helps to burn up those chemicals.
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