Want to learn more about the benefits to your mental health that exercise provides? Read on...
Many studies show that folks who exercise regularly get a positive boost in their overall sense of well being, and lower rates of depression. Benefits like improved self esteem result from exercise, because your body releases chemicals called endorphins. These endorphins interact with the receptors in your brain that reduce your perception of pain. They also trigger a positive feeling in the body, similar to that of morphine. As an example, after a run or workout, the feeling people describe is "euphoric." That feeling, known as a "runner's high," makes you feel good long after the workout or run.
When you stimulate your endorphins through exercise, they act as analgesics, which means they diminish the perception of pain, and as sedatives, aiding sleep. They are manufactured in your brain, spinal cord, and many other parts of your body and are released in response to brain chemicals called neurotransmitters. The neuron receptors endorphins bind to are the same ones that bind some pain medicines. Unlike many medications, though, exercise typically isn't harmfully addictive (there are exceptions to this, of course, usually accompanying bulimia or anorexia).
Exercise in underused, yet very effective as an adjunct therapy for depression. Any kind of exercise can stimulate the release of those "feel good" substances, so get moving!
Happy Baby pose/Ananda Balasana seemed to fit my theme today of happiness! This pose gently brings greater awareness to your joints, and opens up the lower back, as you shift your weight side to side, just like a baby would. Lying on your back, reach for your feet (if you can't reach, no problem, just grab the closest bit--your ankles, your calves). Then you can hold, or shift your weight side to side,
Ingredients Cooking spray 1 cup quick cooking rolled oats 1/2 cup raw unsalted sunflower seeds 1/2 cup toasted wheat germ 1/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour 1/2 cup dried apricots 1/2 cup raw almonds 1/2 cup raisins 1/2 cup pitted dried dates 1/2 cup powdered nonfat dry milk 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/3 cup pure maple syrup 2 large eggs Directions Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 9 by 13-inch baking pan with cooking spray.
Place all ingredients except the syrup and eggs in a food processor and pulse until the mixture is finely chopped. Add the syrup and eggs and pulse until the mixture is well combined. It will resemble a coarse paste.
Transfer to the baking pan and spread evenly. Bake until just done, about 20 minutes. Cut into 20 squares.
Read more at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ellie-krieger/energy-bars-recipe.html?oc=linkback
Above is a mini workout to make your week extra fun! Here's the list of exercises:
side plank 1 at 15 seconds per side
bear crawl 25
push ups, 25
jumping jacks, 25
plank, 1 at 30 seconds
mountain climbers, 25
REPEAT twice more