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5 Incredible Ways Exercise Boosts Your Confidence

Kate Gitman 6 months ago - in Health & Fitness

When we look good, we feel good. Right? Well, that is not always the case for those of us who lack confidence. Thankfully, nature has a great way of rewarding us for taking care of our bodies; endorphins. There is more to confidence than looking good on the outside – it is about how we feel on the inside too. I would like to offer my two cents about the amazing effects of exercise. Here are five confidence-related reasons to get you out the front door for your workout.

1. The neurochemical party in your brain

We have all heard about endorphins being released into our bloodstream during exercise. But it does not stop there; we also get a boost in three awesome neurotransmitters. Serotonin is produced by long sessions of cardio exercise and is known to decrease depression, low mood, and feelings of hostility.

Dopamine, associated more with weight-bearing exercise, improves your mood and long-term memory. Both of these chemicals contribute to the famous “runners high” that can last for hours after your run ends. Research shows that regular low-impact exercise also leads to higher levels of GABA in the brain, which helps to lower anxiety. And nothing kills confidence like anxiety does.

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2. The aching reminds you of your achievement

A nagging little reminder of your workout, in the form of muscle stiffness, is a little pat on the back at the same time. When you know that you worked hard because your body tells you so, that reassures you that you are on the track to looking better and feeling stronger. Feeling good is all about those little reminders that we are doing our best.

3. The aching also helps your posture

Whenever I have muscle stiffness, it reminds me to sit up straight in my office chair. When my abs ache I hold my core tighter and stand a little taller too. The stiffness also encourages stretching, which is great for you on so many levels.

Standing up tall, stretching your arms out to the side, and holding yourself well when you walk all contribute to your general level of confidence. It is a subtle, subconscious trick that we all can benefit from. If you want to learn more about the psychological effect of posture, then check out Amy Cuddy’s TED Talk on YouTube.

4. Seeing and feeling results

There is nothing like the feeling of getting back into an old pair of jeans that used to fit you. Seeing the results of your exercise in the mirror is a huge confidence booster. And it is not all about being more confident in your physical appearance. Seeing your consistent effort paying off is confirmation that you can achieve what you put your mind to. This is about growing confidence in your abilities too.

5. Confidence is contagious

Spending more time at the gym with the other gym bunnies is really good for your state of mind. Everyone in your gym class is on the same exercise high as you, and feeling confident too. So go ahead and let the good vibes get to you.

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Not into the busy gym environment? That’s okay. You could join a running club, or a walking group, or a sports team. There are definitely more options available than excuses not too. So what are you waiting for? Get moving, make your brain happier and enjoy your newly boosted confidence.