October 18, 2022 4 min read
As the outdoor activities slowly start packing up and the daylight hours become shorter, our exposure to sunlight also greatly reduces. This leads to a phenomenon called SAD. When we're exposed to sunlight, our serotonin levels increase. Serotonin is a chemical responsible for a variety of things, such as maintaining our circadian rhythm and reducing our negative emotions. With a lack of serotonin, we become more vulnerable to mood shifts and having inconsistent sleep. Both of these significantly contribute to making us feel more depressed, and leads us to feeling more tired, both physically and mentally. To counteract this, it is highly important to take advantage of any sunlight during the winter days, and to always have some vitamin D tablets at home.
Although winter can be a huge obstacle in your journey for self-improvement, it shouldn't stop your grind altogether. There are many resources for mental health support and many ways to continue exercising even when your local park may be a bit too slippery to have a jog through.
If all else fails there's always walking—just make sure it counts! A brisk walk around town might not seem like much but it's actually great for heart health because each step pumps extra blood through arteries around our bodies which helps keep everything running smoothly from brain cells down through leg muscles (the same reason why we go outside when we need fresh air).
Although winter can be daunting for mental health, and can restrict a lot of our social life, there are still many ways you can prevent yourself from falling into a complete mental "shutdown".
Exercise can help you to sleep better at night. A good night's sleep is very important for a healthy mind, body, and spirit, so if exercise helps you sleep better then it will definitely contribute to your overall well-being.
Exercising regularly can reinforce your self-image in a positive way because it makes you feel good about yourself. You are doing something good for your health and that will give you a boost of positivity when it comes to how you view yourself as an individual.
Regular exercise reduces stress levels, as having a regular routine lets you constantly look forward to a set task every day. In most cases, you will find yourself spending a lot of time indoors during the winter. Having a regular exercise time set gives you a foundation to work the rest of your day around. Even if you end up not doing anything the rest of the day, you can rest assured knowing that even just the routine exercise made the entire day productive.
By reducing our negative emotions and maintaining discipline, we can overcome the harsh winter and effectively continue our grind for personal fitness. No matter what your motivation or reason is to get fit, it is mandatory to give an equal amount of attention to your mental health just as much your physical health.
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