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Fitness Articles  ›  Pitfalls and Plateaus

Bust Your Bad Mood with Exercise

Use Fitness, Not Food, to Change Your State of Mind

-- By Jason Anderson, Certified Personal Trainer
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Your Mood: Lonely
When you feel lonely, throwing a pity party for one will only make it worse. Sometimes the best thing for you is to get out and socialize.
Mood Busting Exercises: Any group fitness class
Exercising with a group of people who are all following the same routine and all have similar goals can really make you feel like you're a part of something bigger than yourself. No matter what type of class you choose, there are plenty of reasons why group classes are so popular: They offer social support, a friendly environment and an opportunity to meet people who have similar interests.

Your Mood: Depressed
Depression is no joke. Millions of people suffer from depression that is debilitating and emotionally painful, but exercise is scientifically proven to help treat depression. While finding the motivation to take the first step is the hardest part, the right activity can help.
Mood Busting Exercises: Outdoor walking, biking, or running
There's something restorative about nature. Getting outside to breathe in fresh air and admire the scenery can make a world of difference in your perspective. Plus, regular exposure to sunlight can boost your mood and ward off seasonal depression, too. No matter what outdoor pursuit you enjoy (think outside of the box and try canoeing, climbing, or team sports, too), moving your body can help improve your outlook and symptoms.

Your Mood: Stressed
We're all busy, often taking on more responsibilities than we can handle. When life gets crazy and you want to throw in the towel, you can wind down without giving up on your obligations.
Mood Busting Exercises: Mind-body exercises like yoga, Pilates, or Tai chi
Mind-body exercises take focus, patience, and attention. Because of the complexities of maintaining the correct form and breathing, which connects the mind and body, it's almost impossible to think about your to-do list while you're in the middle of a good yoga or Pilates class, for example. The quiet, meditative atmosphere in these classes (and videos) allows you to tune in to the present moment—something that the overly stressed should do more often! If you're thinking that you're too busy or overwhelmed to try a class, then take advantage of short video workouts that are often broken up into 10- to 30- minute segments.


Have you ever finished a workout and thought to yourself, "I wish I hadn’t done that! I really just wasted my time." Probably not. Chances are you feel better physically and mentally. Regardless of your funk, exercise can be a useful tool to get you back to bust your bad mood and get back to your normal self. What are you waiting for?
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About The Author

Jason Anderson Jason Anderson
Jason loves to see people realize the benefits of a healthy, active lifestyle. He is a certified personal trainer and enjoys running races--from 5Ks to 50K ultramarathons. See all of Jason's articles.

Member Comments

  • ARYTON
    Wish there was a way to save this to my page lol - 6/3/2014 8:26:15 PM
  • BLUEFROG4
    New mood to consider: Perplexed. I have a really hard time making decisions and tend to eat while I'm procrastinating and thinking over the options. I bet simply taking an outdoor walk and mindfully noticing things along the way would go a long way to helping me out. And by the time I got home, I'd probably have an answer! - 5/24/2014 9:26:18 AM
  • I love this article it address the various moods I've been going thru lately especially getting in a huge funk due to rainy weather in my state. - 4/30/2014 8:37:57 PM
  • This is a great idea, I like the idea of having a chart or what to do when! - 4/30/2014 11:19:53 AM
  • Awesome ideas. There is no longer any reason to use being in a funk as an excuse to self sabotage hard work and progress by stuffing your face or being a couch potato. You don't have to run a marathon, what I have learned is that any exercise is still exercise. If I only walk around the block because I am tired or I am too busy or squeeze in a ten minute cardio routine, that's OK. We won't be super motivated every single day. Just do what you can. - 10/31/2013 11:54:12 PM
  • This article is great advice. Walking outside feels so good I try to do it everyday. At least 3 times a week I walk at apace to make to me a little breathless ( about 25 mile minutes) The rest of the time I walk with my husband or friends at a pace that we can carry on a conversation. Walking is great whether I'm try to improve my emotions or my heart thru aerobics. - 10/31/2013 2:21:00 PM
  • Perfect timing to read this today!
    - 10/31/2013 11:20:21 AM
  • I really love this article. It covers all the bases!! I've found that no matter what mood I'm in, kickboxing & zumba will help get me out of the funk. It's hard to be upset/sad/angry when you're dancing or moving around. - 10/22/2013 1:56:43 PM
  • I use the kickboxing it makes me feel like I did something I shouldn't have but it burns the stress off that way I can say at least it wasn't on them or to them in person just in my head I guess is safer than blowing up on someone else that's why the kick boxing is my favorite who Evers making me angry that my target for the day if I'm not angry or frustrated or upset its walking the boring walking I get to board with it - 10/6/2013 10:39:16 PM
  • This article was really helpful. I'm going to try different things to try and counteract specific moods and see how that works for me...I'm excited! - 9/24/2013 9:59:22 PM
  • Great article. Thanks - 6/23/2013 9:18:13 AM
  • SUEINF
    I agree with WARDJOREE walking outside gives me a lift and helps the stress. I'm in Florida so that is possible most days here. - 3/4/2013 3:48:05 PM
  • Kickboxing. Kickboxing. Not everyone likes kickboxing. Some of our Jazzercise routines have kickboxing moves, and I cringe and feel crummy. It brings back unwelcome memories of domestic violence, and a very bad period in my life.

    Yes, I know. Some women feel "empowered" by kicking and punching. I don't. I just feel sick. To do kickboxing in response to feeling bad would only have me feeling worse.

    No thanks. No punching fists for me, please. No kicking feet. - 1/5/2013 10:58:47 AM
  • Great article. Thank you. - 9/2/2012 1:08:22 AM
  • Great article. Thank you. - 9/2/2012 1:07:45 AM
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