53 answers

Does Exercise Really Give You More Energy and Improve Mood?

My husband loves to workout but I really don't and am very lucky that I have a fantastic metabolism so really don't need to for weight management. But he says it will give me more energy and also is a great stress relieve. I've always tired very easily - even when I was single and did workout some - and never noticed any difference in my mood when I was on an exercise program. So I'm doubtful and the last thing I want to do is workout verus relax in the little time I have to do so. Same time, some people say it makes you need less sleep so maybe I'd be trading sleep for workout time. Has anyone gone from never working out - and really not wanting to - to doing so and really noticed a big difference in their energy and also mood? Along these lines, has anyone found a good exercise video to do with their young children? With winter here, I'd like to get my daughters some exercise at least. Thanks!

17 moms found this helpful

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I wish I had time to thank everyone individually. As people have said in the past, mothers are the greatest group. I really appreciate everyone's replies and I plan to keep this page as a reference for motivation as well as to keep track of specific diet and video recs. There were a lot of great tips and I wish I lived nearby the mothers that offered participating in their group but I'm on the penninsula. So I'll go it alone but thanks again so much!!

Featured Answers

Hi,

I have a background as a fitness instructor and post having my daughter I stopped exercising. My energy levels were so low and I put it all down to breastfeeding, having a newborn etc. When she was about 18months I finally got myself back into regular exercise and the difference in energy levels after the first few weeks of doing it are amazing. I always knew the theory but I now have experienced it too.

SOrry no advice on videos, although there are a bundle for the kids. I live in Australia so have a different selection, but the "Bindi - Kidfit" is loved by my 3 year old adn she dances along to all the moves. Also Hi5 - Dancemoves. THese both get her up and moving throughout the DVD.

I have a stationery bike in front of the TV and ride it a night instead of sitting ont he couch watching TV (that is when I do get to sit and watch TV.

Good luck.

K.

2 moms found this helpful

From my experience it makes a huge difference. I had a miscarriage a couple years ago and was very down for about a year...then I joined a gym and started working out a few times a week and it made a HUGE difference! I think it was a combination of physically feeling healthier, and feeling good about taking some time just for myself. I think if you're in a pretty good mood to begin with though you might not notice as much.

1 mom found this helpful

I have gone from no exercise to working out 3-4 times a week for 90-120 mins. It has changed my life. I accomplish more, spending that time at the gym than staying home the whole time. I find I feel best when I can really heat my body up. Plus, with 4 kids, it is my only 'me' time. Somehow, there is more of me to give when I take this time. Scheduling is tricky, but well worth it. After doing it for awhile you will come to crave it because it feels so good. Give it and honest effort for three months, then decide. Don't go on anyones word...just try it!

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

Hi P., I have fibromyalgia, which is a muscular disorder that causes pain and burning in the muscles and joints throughout the back, shoulders, neck, and hips. FMS also caused extreme fatigue that can sometimes replicate mono. The fatigue can last for a few days to several months at a time. These "episodes" have come and gone for me over and over during the past 18 years.

I have never exercised a day in my life. On November 10th, my doctor sent me to a physical therapist to try to help me get moving and possibly rid myself of some of this pain I have (it's pretty extreme in my shoulders and back). Since then, I went from never working out a day in my life to working out for one hour per day 4 days per week. Not that I really needed to, but I have also lost 17 pounds in the past 7 weeks, and went from sleeping 9-10 hours per night to 6 hours per night.

I feel better than I have ever felt in my life! I have energy, I can do household things, play with my child, work, and excersize ALL IN ONE DAY! Previously it took everything in me to work a part-time job and take care of my 2-1/2 year old daughter. Now I can truly enjoy life and I feel like a million bucks!

Here's what I do. I spend 20 minutes stretching (legs, hips, back look up quad/hamstring stretches, cat/camel stretches, bird dog stretches and leg lifts with a foam roll). Then I do 20 minutes of hand held weights (3 sets of 15 biceps, triceps, laterals and bi-laterals), 5 minutes of squats and situps using one of those big balls (3 sets of 15 each, alternating between the two), and then 15 minutes of walking on a treadmill at 4.0 incline 3.5 speed holding 2-3 pound weights.

So, to answer your question - YES, excersizing DOES increase energy, and you do require less sleep! Good luck, and Happy New Year!

5 moms found this helpful

Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes!

Hiking, biking, walking, gym classes, DVDs @ home ~> just move your body 20+ mins per day! So many benefits, here are a few :

* oxygenates your blood
* revitalizes your blood flow
* invigorates your overall energy
* minimizes negative thoughts
* laugh harder when you laugh
* sleep deeper
* strengthens immune system
* removes toxins from your blood
* supports regeneration of internal organs
* supports healthy, glowing skin, hair & nails
* reduces water retention
* supports weight / fat loss

Another thing I do to improve my mood is keeping a gratitude journal. Every morning and/or night writing down 5 things I'm grateful for = this helps you keep those things "front & center" = supporting an overall better attitude toward the downturns in your life.. Exercise & healthy foods give an amazing wellbeing sense that fortifies you when things go awry. I'm a lifelong believer!!

4 moms found this helpful

Hi P.,
I'm not a doctor, but I am a family therapist and I tell all my depressed clients that they need to get out and exercise, because it will help your mood. Exercising causes your body to release neurotransmitters that elevate your mood. It's not like you feel happy every time you work out, but overall you will see you find more things enjoyable. When I wqork out, I find I do have more energy. It's not like I sit around hyper, but when I'm thinking, 'Gosh, I'd like to go do....' instead of thinking, 'No way-- that's too much work!' I think, 'Yeah, that'd be fun.' and go do it.
Best of luck!

3 moms found this helpful

Hi,

I have a background as a fitness instructor and post having my daughter I stopped exercising. My energy levels were so low and I put it all down to breastfeeding, having a newborn etc. When she was about 18months I finally got myself back into regular exercise and the difference in energy levels after the first few weeks of doing it are amazing. I always knew the theory but I now have experienced it too.

SOrry no advice on videos, although there are a bundle for the kids. I live in Australia so have a different selection, but the "Bindi - Kidfit" is loved by my 3 year old adn she dances along to all the moves. Also Hi5 - Dancemoves. THese both get her up and moving throughout the DVD.

I have a stationery bike in front of the TV and ride it a night instead of sitting ont he couch watching TV (that is when I do get to sit and watch TV.

Good luck.

K.

2 moms found this helpful

Yes absolutely. Working out give you energy and resilience. You may not feel like it as you get up early to work out, but you will over time. That is just the physical benefit, the mental health and improved state of mind have me working out regularly .

Just try something for 6 weeks and see how you feel. Find a group you can work out with who will encourage you and motivate you. If you know someone is waiting for you, it is less likely you will make excuses for not working out just this one time.

You will also be a great role model to your children who will see you taking care of yourself, staying fit and active.

2 moms found this helpful

Hi P..

I HATE to exercise and I happen to be one that doesn't have that wonderful metabolism, so I really am supposed to exercise, but I have to push myself to do it.

Two things I love:

Leslie Sansone has walking DVDs that are very simple, but I really do feel better when I do them daily. They are so basic just walking in place, doing a couple of kicks and lifting your knees once in a while. It is not highly aerobic, but it gets the blood moving and has helped my mood and my blood sugar tremendously. My kids do it with me. She has tons of them out there from 1 mile and up. You can walk as long or as little as you want to. I highly recommend these. Also, you can do them inside or she has CD's you can listen to while you walk outside.

The other thing I do with my kids is jump rope. It works the entire body (though you have to be prepared if you have bladder issues). You probably don't have to worry about that. I'm 48, so I do! But my kids and I have a contest to see who can do the most jumps without stopping. We usually do 100 at a time and call it a day. Just a little, but it goes a long way.

Actually, there is one more thing my kids and I love. By the way, my kids are young too (I started late). When I was in grammar school in the '60s there was a recording called "Chicken Fat." Robert Preston did it for the President's Fitness Council. You can download it off the internet. The song is funny and it tells you exactly what exercises to do. The goal is to do a little exercise every morning and get rid of your chicken fat "go you chicken fat go. . . " I think your girls would love it. Good luck to you, and I hope one of these helps.

2 moms found this helpful

Hi P.,

I work full time 40+ hours/week and have three kids (2,4,8). I am a HUGE fan of working out - more specifically running. I also used to do 20 minute kick-boxing videos in my living room when my kids were newborn and I do yoga in my living room to.

I can say that getting a great cardio workout totally improves energy, stress, happiness (it releases endorphins), fatigue and makes you feel good about yourself (looks and accomplishment). This should also be combined with a healthy diet to ensure you are feeling your best and getting enough of the food you need for energy. I run my best when I eat right.

When I don't run, my kids and my husband don't like who I become. There is also something to be said about just getting away from everyone and being alone, which is rare when your a mom.

If it helps, you might want to make a goal around your excercise - say you are going to do a 10K, 5K, 1/2 marathon, 50 mile cycle. Sign up for an event and then train for it and see how you feel. When you first start - it is much harder than when you have been doing it for a while. For instance, miles 1-3 is harder than miles 10-13 for me (a lot of people say this). You can go to active.com and there are related links for walking and other fitness routines. You can find events here.

One more thing - I rarely get sick and when you have little ones that pays off too.

Good Luck!!

2 moms found this helpful

Hi P.. As an exercise hater I hate to admit it but your husband is right. When you workout; and I mean really workout where you're breathing hard, sweating, and your heart feels like it is racing a mile a minute, you release endorphins. These are the feel good chemicals that your brain releases. Also, if you workout in the morning you get the biggest benefit. Your brain slowly releases them throughout the day and then by the time it is dinner time or bedtime you don't feel it. This takes time. Also, regular workouts help increase your metabolism so you'll lose weight and inches. Plus, your daughters will see you making healthy choices. Remember, exercise can be 10 minutes of jumping jacks before you hop in the shower. Just go until you're breathing hard, sweating, and your heart is racing. Then continue for about 5 minutes more. As you get more fit (not slimmer or weigh less) you'll be able to go longer. Here's a great website to help you keep track and give you suggestions http://www.sparkpeople.com/. Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

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