Contributed by: Dustin Gonzales, M.S., NASM-CPT

Mental health is often viewed as unimportant or as an individual’s chosen mood or behavior. However, those individuals that do not suffer from anxiety or depression (just to name a few) do not understand how difficult these issues are to manage without the proper tools. Mental health issues are often due to chemical imbalances. This can be an excessive amount of the chemical dopamine, a lack of serotonin, too much serotonin, etc. Other mental health issues are also neurologically based. Our brain is one of our most important and vital muscles. It must too, be exercised.

In order to lead a life that is balanced, we must take care of our physical and mental health. When we exercise, we release the chemical dopamine, which is what makes us feel happy after a good workout. Therefore, boosting our mood and contributing to an overall better state of mind. By making physical activity a part of your daily routine, you are taking the steps necessary to strengthen your muscles both physically and mentally. After all, have you ever finished a workout and said, “I absolutely regret that workout.” Chances are slim.

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