Physical Activity and how it Affects Self-Esteem

exercise

Having an active lifestyle brings many benefits. These include increased fitness, stamina, health, and also self-esteem. Studies have shown there is a direct link between physical activity and self-esteem but how does being active affect this area?

 

Wishing to be physically active doesn’t have to mean taking part in Ironman contests or running marathons. It can mean taking some time out for aerobic exercise or partaking in a yoga class. It could even be volunteering with a local youth sports team. While the link between physical activity and self-esteem is not under question it is still interesting to learn how it works. Below here are some ways being active can boost your self-esteem. 

A sense of achievement

Achieving goals brings its own rewards and exercise routines are the same. If you have set yourself fitness goals or targets in your regime and met them you will feel good, as simple as that.

 

It could be that you have set yourself a goal to reduce your BMI (body mass index) and when you hit this there is a great sense of achievement. This heightens your self-confidence and makes you believe that other goals are within your grasp. 

Physical health benefits

Not only do you feel good from exercise but you know that you are improving your own health. You will feel yourself glowing. Your skin will improve and you will lose weight and reduce the risks of future health problems.

 

Anyone who has lost some extra weight will know how good it feels to have achieved this and it is simple goals like this that can bring extra health benefits. Losing weight and being active means less risk of diabetes, heart disease, and heart attacks, lower blood pressure, and cholesterol. Using a BMI scale such as one from FitTrack can help you to monitor various health indicators and improve your exercise routines. 

Mental health benefits from exercise

It isn’t only physical health that improves with exercise and activity. Exercise is a natural aid for symptoms of depression and stress. The endorphins that are released during physical activity improve how a person feels and can lower feelings of stress, anger, and frustration. Exercise can help stimulate a healthy appetite and with all the benefits combined with the potential social aspect, it can raise someone’s spirits and improve their general quality of life. The feeling of well-being will last long after the exercise routine as well-meaning you will continue to feel these benefits for some time.

Better body image

Not only does exercise reduce stress and anxiety, improve health and mental well-being, it also improves a person’s body image. Self-esteem issues are often tied to how people perceive themselves. By regularly exercising you will see changes to your body tone, fat, and muscles. These improvements cannot help but improve how you see yourself and therefore improve your body image. This in turn increases your self-confidence and self-esteem. 

It can improve your daily routine

One thing that has affected nearly everyone over the last year is the Covid pandemic. This meant many millions of people were forced into lockdowns and had limited movement. The result of this is many people stopped their normal routines and became less active. This is an easy habit to slide into but doing some short exercise routine at home can make all the difference to how someone feels.

 

Doing just 30 minutes of aerobic exercise is enough for endorphins to kick in raising your mood and the general feeling of well-being. You can exercise at home so there is no need for a lockdown to affect your mood and you also save money from not going to the gym. 

Your confidence levels will skyrocket

Going to the gym, taking part in sports, or working out alone will all improve your overall fitness and help to tone your body. This won’t just improve your own body image but how others see you too. You will visibly appear fitter and stronger and with this will come extra confidence.

 

You will likely feel more confident about taking on other activities you may have not considered before such as a new sport or joining a club. Your social world will become larger and thus your everyday life will improve. 

Summary

A sedentary lifestyle is not just bad for you physically but it will damage your self-esteem in the long run. Sitting around watching TV and eating snacks might be fun for a lazy day but this continued lifestyle will lead to health problems and poor fitness. This affects how people feel mentally and it will erode their confidence and self-esteem over time.

 

The best part of physical activity is that most people can indulge in some form of it. Just thirty minutes a couple of times a week will help to reduce stress and help with other areas too.

 

Photo by bantersnaps on Unsplash

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