An Equal Opportunity Upper

19 September, 2012

It's exercise. And although you've probably heard that it acts as a natural mood booster, here's the kicker: you don't need to be down for exercise to bring you up. In a study, women who were already feeling fine experienced just as much of a mood boost from exercise as women who were depressed and anxious. So be a feel-good overachiever and get moving.

Don't think you need a mood boost? That's fine. You'll still feel more energized, think more clearly, and experience a general high if you grab a workout anyway. Of course, if you are feeling angry, confused, down, tense, or tired, working out will help alleviate all of that. So for the sake of your mind as well as your body, get active for at least 30 minutes on most days of the week. Choose an activity you enjoy, whether it's hiking on neighborhood trails, conquering a challenging path on your mountain bike, or playing a rousing game of fetch with your dog. Just get moving. Because -- really -- can't everyone use a good mood boost?

SOURCES: Personality does not influence exercise-induced mood enhancement among female exercisers. Milton, K. E., Lane, A. M., Terry, P. C., The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2005 Jun;45(2):208-212.

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