For those who exercise regularly, there is an association of emotional well-being and physical activity. In fact, several studies have shown a decrease in depression with an increase in physical activity in addition to more than a hundred clinical studies have concluding that exercise boosts mood and mental function. Scientifically speaking, stress reduction and stimulation of mood-modulating neurotransmitters dopamine and serotonin are the reason behind this (Olpin, 15). Part of the long-term relief is due to the unique way exercise helps build up a resistance to stress. "Through regular cardio, you actually change your brain, so it takes more and more stress to trigger the fight-or-flight response," says John Ratey, MD, an associate clinical professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and author of Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain (Fitness Magazine, 1). Watch the video below for information on how exercise rewires our brain and reduces stress and anxiety.
Goad, Kimberly. "Stop Stress for Good: Exercise to Fight Stress." Fitness Magazine. Fitness Magazine, 24 Aug. 2010. Web. 01 Apr. 2017.
Kettunen, O., Vuorimaa, T., & Vasankari, T. (2015). A 12-month exercise intervention decreased stress symptoms and increased mental resources among working adults – Results perceived after a 12-month follow-up. International Journal of Occupational Medicine and Environmental Health,28(1), 157-168. doi:10.13075/ijomeh.1896.00263
Olpin, M., & Hesson, M. (2015). Stress Management For Life. Belmont, CA: Thomson Higher Education.