Moving to relax and re-energise
14 December 2020
You often need to spend energy to create more of it – easier said than done as we head towards the end of a year! But what if simply moving your body looked like playing with your pet, going for a walk with a friend or kicking a ball around with some kids? More achievable, right?
Rest and relaxation have become a cliché – albeit something we look forward to. And although rest can be really relaxing, most people overlook the fact that exercise can also be calming… in a different kind of way.
Regular exercise can bring remarkable changes to your body, your metabolism, your sleep, and your spirits. Physical activity reduces levels of the body's stress hormones, such as adrenaline and cortisol. It also stimulates the production of endorphins, chemicals in the brain that are the body's natural painkillers and mood elevators. Who couldn’t do with a bit more exhilaration and calm, and a little less stress at this time of year!
Moving your body also provides opportunities to get away from it all and to either enjoy some solitude or to make friends and build networks with like-minded people. Consider walking in the park, taking a yoga class, or joining a group hike or bike ride with a friend or family member. All of these things are chances to change up your environment and discover new people and places. Sometimes that’s all you need - to take a break from your everyday routine and return feeling refreshed.
So, by all means if you’re not feeling it, give yourself permission for time out if you need it – goodness knows you’ve probably earned it this year. But if you’ve still got a bit to get through before the year’s out and want to figure out a way to find the energy to deal with it, give exercise a go. Who knows, you might even find it’s a habit you want to carry into the new year.