It’s not always easy to get yourself out of an anxiety spell, especially when the weather outside is cold and damp. But you if you can, take a few seconds to stand up and breathe through your nose. Count one to five. Hold your breath for another round of five. Then slowly release and exhale all the negative emotions you’re holding in.
If that doesn’t work, then you need a plan. It turns out that just mapping out things that you can do for the day can help you tap your energy reserves, chase down your blues and put them to work instead. By the end of the day, once you’ve checked off most of the items on your list, you’d feel more accomplished, different from what you initially started with.
It helps even more if you pencil in a couple of exercises in between. The good news is that you don’t have to go outside your room if you’re not up for it or if the conditions remain glum-chummed. For as long as you can get your blood running and your heart rate up, then you’re off to a good start.
Get up from your bed, and do these easy yet effective mood booster exercises.
Biking In or Out
One of the most reliable mood boosters out there is biking. Powering down on those pedals can get your blood flow going straight up to your brain and give you that much-needed stream of oxygen.
There’s real science behind inhaling and exhaling, which confirms the calming effect of breathing. When doing cardio exercises, oxygen rushes toward the specific part of your body that is undergoing vigorous motion. It works the same way a bee rushes to honey. As you pedal your way through, whether you’re on a stationary or regular outdoor bike with a cycling powerpod, you’ll immediately feel your anxiety diffusing.
Your lower extremities, including glutes and quads, have some of the biggest muscles in the body. When you warm them up, it will have a domino effect on your inner and upper extremities. Doing a few squats can pump blood from those muscles and almost immediately circulate that much-needed energy all throughout your body.
To pull off a proper squat, make sure you keep your weight on your heels. Spread your legs, and clasp your hands upfront. Lower your body slowly until your knees are bent and your rear is parallel to the floor. Hold the same position for a few seconds for as long as you can. Then pull up slowly and resume your starting position for that tight squeeze.
Jog in Place
It means precisely that: jogging in the same spot. You can start by doing a couple of left-right slow marches to warm up. Lift your knees as high as you can as you move along. You won’t have to worry about taking up too much space since you’ll be landing on the original spot or at least as close to it as possible.
When you’re all warmed up, pick up the pace and start jogging like you usually would on a regular running track, without moving too far from your starting point. After jogging in place for 20 to 30 seconds, you can try engaging the rest of your body. You can pump your arms, get your knees higher, or make each stride faster to get your heart rate up. Do this for about a minute or two, and you should be good to go for the next warming-up exercise.
Light workouts mean routines that you can do anywhere at any time. Arm circles are one of the most effective no-equipment exercises for sluggish limbs. To get started, spread your feet apart. Raise your arms to the sides, as wide and as straight as you can. Make sure you’re standing with your back as straight as possible. Draw invisible circles with your fingertips, and rotate your shoulders.
Start with small circles and gradually work your way up, making them as big as you can as you move along. The bigger the rings, the better the impact the workout will have on your arms and shoulders. After completing a set, switch your arm rotation backward. While doing this, you can also do a few necks stretches in between to get your circulation going.