When you feel like depression is crushing you or anxiety is making you want to crawl out of your skin, the last thing on your mind is exercise. But Running is just the thing you need – and you’ll do more than just let go of strength. that Analytics Researchers from Harvard University in more than 50,000 people have found that stressed individuals who engage in regular physical activity have twice the protection against stroke and heart attack compared to less stressful exercise. Stressors were defined as those dealing with anxiety and depression.
All exercisers were 17 percent less likely to have a heart attack than non-exercisers, regardless of stress levels. But the benefits were significantly higher in people with anxiety or depression, who had a 22 percent reduction in risk versus a 10 percent reduction in those without either condition.
Physical activity affects stress-related neural mechanisms in the brain that have a direct impact on heart health, explains researcher Hadil Zregat, MD, a postdoctoral clinical research fellow at Massachusetts General Hospital and lead author of the study.
Aim for 150 minutes per week. This is a 15-minute walk on your lunch break followed by 15 minutes of curls and crunches when you get home; 30 minutes a day by bike to your office (bonus: save the environment); Or three 50-minute training sessions per week.
Bonus: The exercise itself boosts mood, and helps melt some of that troubling energy.
To access exclusive gear videos, celebrity interviews, and more, Subscribe to YouTube!