11 Reasons Weight Lifting is Good for Mental Health
September 22, 2015
Bodybuilding can be great physically, but it also gives a huge boost to your mental health. Here is a quick list of 11 different ways that lifting weights can improve your mood and mindset.
1: Decreases Anxiety
About 15% of people in the United States experiences anxiety that lasts anywhere from 15 to 30 days a month. Studies have shown that people who undertake moderate levels of resistance training experience better moods and less anxiety on a monthly basis.
2: Improves Cognition
Research has shown that people who are more physically active also tend to receive mental benefits, getting better cognition and awareness. In fact, weight lifting provides an improvement over almost all higher thinking functions.
3: Releases Endorphins
Exercise in general and weight lifting in particular releases endorphins in your brain. Endorphins are basically “feel good” chemicals that stimulate the pleasure parts of your brain and elevate your mood.
4: Decreases Depression
People who suffer from depression and other mental health issues can find those illnesses relieved through resistance training. This works for people who get a little down once in a while as well as those who suffer from clinical depression.
5: Reduces Fatigue
Chronic fatigue disorder is something that almost a quarter of Americans have to deal with in their everyday life. Resistance training reduces the level of fatigue that the body experiences and makes for a better night’s sleep.
6: Improves Self-Esteem
Weight lifting can improve your self-esteem both in the short term and the long run. This is partly due to the better physique that it brings but also due to the sense of accomplishment that weight lifting provides.
7: Increases Social Skills
In addition to the mental health benefits, weight lifting is associated with improved social skills. The gym environment may have something to do with that, but the fact that exercise enhances brain function also plays a major role.
8: Boosts Memory
The repetition involved in weight training has surprising effects, including better memory. Studies have shown that weight lifting can improve both your short-term and long-term memory.
9: Improves Executive Functions
The skills associated with business management such as regulation and reasoning are known as executive functions. These increase with weight training, meaning that working out can actually make you better at your job.
10: Enhances Multitasking Abilities
Are you feeling overwhelmed with the sheer number of things facing you in your life? The increased awareness and mental flexibility from weight lifting can also increase your ability to handle many different tasks at once. This is a huge boon in both the personal and professional world.
11: Provides a Sense of Personal Achievement
What better way to give yourself a sense of pride than to achieve tasks that seem nearly impossible to most people? Weight lifting provides a person with challenges and a way to overcome them. This increases their personal sense of accomplishment, which does wonders for mental health.
The bottom line is that mental health and physical health are closely linked. If you want to feel better and perform better mentally, weight lifting is a great way to start.