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Research Proves People Who Exercise Are Happier

Anyone who has ever done moderate physical exercise can attest to the endorphin rush you get when you’re done working out. There’s a natural surge in hormones that can have a very euphoric effect. There’s no better “feel good” drug on the planet. Experts have long understood this hormonal connection but a new study proves that people are in a better mood for up to 12 hours after they exercise!

Who wouldn’t want to be in a better mood all day long? The truth is you can and the secret is simply doing regular moderate-high intensity exercise.

Researchers at the University of Vermont had 24 college students ride an exercise bike for ONLY 20 minutes at a moderate intensity while another 24 students did no exercise at all during the testing period.

Not surprisingly, when participants of both groups filled out questionnaires that evaluated their overall mood, the first group scored significantly higher. The questionnaire covered areas like stress, tension, anger, vigor, fatigue, confusion, and depression.

What so many people fail to realize is the absolute best cure for stress, tension, depression, and a lack of energy is exercise. You can try to cover up these problems with medications, alcohol, caffeine, and other drugs but you’re only kidding yourself. These things only mask the real problem and are temporary quick fixes that most always have a boomerang effect.

Now I’m not suggesting that all medications are a bad thing, especially when it comes to depression. There are people who have legitimate imbalances that can be effectively treated with medication. But I will say this…and it may upset some people but so be it.

I bet that 50% or greater of people who are on anti-depressant medications right now don’t need to be on them.

They’re simply not needed and the physicians who are writing them the scripts aren’t doing them any favors.

This is a real touchy subject for me. It infuriates me that physicians who are entrusted to care for our health would turn a blind eye to the real underlying problems and simply write a prescription just to shuffle the person out of their office.

Now, once again this is not always the case and YES there are still some good doctors out there. If you can’t find one here in Charleston drop me an email and I’ll give you a personal referral.

I’ve seen countless examples with people who came into my personal training studios for help with weight loss that revealed on their health status questionnaire taking some type of anti-depressant medication.

Whether the weight gain came before or after they started taking the medication is the flip of a coin. Most anti-depressants are notorious for weight gain because they alter the hormonal balances in the body.

The majority of the time the medications were discontinued once the person started exercising.

Eureka…what an amazing discovery.

If I exercise and alter the hormonal balances naturally I don’t need to take medications, deal with weight gain, or the other unnecessary side effects.

I know what you may be saying, “But Shane you just don’t understand, I couldn’t do without them.”

Like I mentioned earlier I am not entirely against the use of anti-depressants. In many instances the medications help to greatly improve a person’s quality of life and they were truly needed because of treatable imbalance.

I would only encourage a person to try exercise BEFORE going down the medication route.

I tell you this from personal experience and want to share a personal story with you that I rarely discuss because it is a painful one. About a year after I moved to South Carolina to fulfill my dream of starting my own fitness business I lost someone very close to me. It was my girlfriend at the time and she tragically lost her life to a suicide attempt.

The weeks that followed her death were the most difficult and darkest days of my life. I went from being a big, strong guy who could bench press over 400 lbs to a man who found it difficult gaining the strength to simply get out of bed and put my pants on.

I was literally taken to my knees.

During the course of my counseling I was encouraged to take an anti-depressant medication to help with the recovery. I decided against it and wanted to see if I could do it naturally through exercise. In the beginning, it was very difficult because I was used to lifting a lot of weight and being one of the strongest guys in the gym.

I found myself only being able to walk on a treadmill for 10 minutes at a time. But I stuck with it and 10 minutes turned into 15 minutes, then 20 minutes, 30 minutes and so the progression went. In less than a month I was back lifting weights and regaining my strength.

The other amazing thing that happened when I started exercising was my mind began to recover as well. With each passing day my outlook became more positive and the depression that had understandably taken a hold of me was fading away.

Was it an easy road?

Absolutely not, but exercising undoubtedly saved my life. I could have easily turned to alcohol, drugs, or simply given up hope and who knows where I’d be today.

I wanted to share this story with you to serve as encouragement and tell you from first hand experience that I’ve come to fully understand the truth about the power of exercise. The recent research study about exercise improving mood comes at no surprise to me.

I’ve lived it and I know it works.

That’s one of the reasons I’m so passionate about teaching people the benefits of regular exercise and a healthy lifestyle. It doesn’t take much…only 30 minutes a day can vastly improve the quality of your life.

We’re only here for a short time and to me it only makes sense to live life to it’s fullest each and every day.

If you’re feeling depressed right now and have slipped into a rut I encourage you to consider a lifestyle change that includes regular physical exercise.

You can do it and there are people like myself who are ready to help you along your journey. Sometimes all it takes is having someone who cares take you by the hand and assist you along the way. It’s hard doing it all alone and when you’re walking all by yourself you’re more vulnerable to destructive habits.

If you would like help please feel free to contact me and I’d be happy to show you the way that worked for me. It’s what we do everyday at Shaping Concepts Personal Training Studios (the fitness business I dreamed of starting).

Hundreds of people from around Charleston have discovered how a time efficient exercise routine and changes in diet and lifestyle can dramatically improve your life.

It’s never too late to start and there’s no day better than today to change the course in your life. You owe it to yourself and to the people who love and depend on you to be healthy and happy.

Shane Doll is a certified Charleston personal trainer, fat loss expert, speaker, and founder of Shaping Concepts Personal Training Studios. You can receive a FREE no-obligations trial of their Charleston personal training programs and experience the difference for yourself.

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Category: Fitness Training.