I have a membership to my local gym which I have been using 3-4 times a week in the last few months of my depression. I love the escape and reward myself with a steam at the end. I use the steam room like a spa in fact, giving myself a facial and body-scrub. The steam room however was ruined for me when a ‘man’ from a Buddhist group I belong to began going at the same time as me and began flirting with me. This was unwelcome and totally inappropriate in a bikini when I was obviously (closed eyes/mud mask) attempting to relax. I changed my times but that meant I didn’t get to go to my favourite Pilates or Yoga classes which were proving fantastic for my state of mind. The anxiety of seeing him though was beginning to cause me distress. His offers of trying out a new massage oil, or suggesting we meet up to meditate together. It just made me uncomfortable – steam rooms are not the place!
After my last meltdown (yesterday) at work and being told I would not be returning to teach I really need a boost of Endorphins but am lacking the motivation to leave my house today. I am also not sure I will be able to afford to continue the membership if I lose my job due to my illness. I am certain the borough I work for will take me through the formal procedural meetings and re send me to visit the occupational health advisor but ultimately both they and I know that I am not able to do my job at this time, possibly ever. I can’t cope with the stress of teaching nor the requirements to manage difficult behaviour in an economically deprived urban school that is extremely challenging – on a good day!
I realise that I have to motivate myself to make changes that will make me happy(er) and read a blog yesterday (can’t remember which one – oops!) that reminded me how important following ones dreams is to the internal state of happiness. Possibly being forced out of a job that contributes to me being unhappy and highly stressed is actually an opportunity.
Making changes however comes with a financial consequence in that I will need a new source of income and will not have money for the gym and steam or my car (which is on its last legs). So today I began with protein a shake and am going to trial home exercise – motivation willing – for a week and use my bike and not the car. I have discovered a free website with loads of Yoga classes at different levels www.doyagawithme.com as well as http://www.sweatybetty.com/free-online-workout-videos/ where they have lots of free workouts. No need to pay the gym? We’ll see.
What Are the Psychological Benefits of Exercise With Depression?
Improved self-esteem is a key psychological benefit of regular physical activity. When you exercise, your body releases chemicals called endorphins. These endorphins interact with the receptors in your brain that reduce your perception of pain.
Endorphins also trigger a positive feeling in the body, similar to that of morphine. For example, the feeling that follows a run or workout is often described as “euphoric.” That feeling, known as a “runner’s high,” can be accompanied by a positive and energizing outlook on life.’