Studies have shown that exercise can not only improve your physical health, but also reduce anxiety levels and raise your self-esteem.  Creating an exercise routine is difficult, but I hope to share with you some tips on how to get started and stay motivated!

Goals are everything

Want to work out twice a week, run a 5K, or complete a yoga session? With a realistic timeline, you will meet that goal. A support system can also be helpful in staying motivated: you can join online Facebook groups, encourage the people who live with you to hold you accountable, or follow accounts on social media that are positive in helping you reach your goal.

Aside from reducing anxiety levels and raising self-esteem, exercising consistently can improve your sleep, increase energy levels, and lower cholesterol.  The benefits are so tempting, but why is it still hard to commit to a routine? Exercise is not a one size fits all. There are many ways to move your body. Below are some ways that may help you!

  • Walking or Running
    • Creating a playlist that is equivalent to your walking/running goal time is helpful and can help the time pass by
    • Listen to audio books and podcasts
  • Swimming or Biking
    • These are both low impact forms of cardio but do require equipment
  • YouTube Channels (at home options)
    • Yoga with Adriene
    • Chloe Ting- anything from HIIT to Ab Work outs
    • Body Project- low impact work outs
    • MadFit- full body dance/song work outs

There are many more options for exercising, but this is a good way to start at home and be able to social distance! Remember to start off small and try and find whatever support system will work best for you. Your mind and body will thank you with improved moods and feeling energized throughout the day, and who doesn’t need a little more energy?


Source: Callaghan P.. Exercise: a neglected intervention in mental health care? J Psychiatr Ment Health Nurs. 2004;11:476–483.

Post by Reyna Melendez

Hear more from Reyna on the You Need a Counselor Podcast!