Endorphins. So many of you love to hate them, and hate to love them. The sole thought of exercise can make your legs numb and your minds freeze. But why are you so intimated? What’s holding you back?
Because I was raised in an active family, exercise has become a daily routine for me. I have an extremely hard time falling asleep without breaking a sweat during the day. Growing up as an athlete, I’ve become so engulfed in the high experienced after a workout. It’s indescribable and truly incomparable. The best part of it all? It’s natural.
Failed a test? Go workout and you’ll have a different outlook on what your future should really be based on. Get in a fight with your boyfriend? Go for a run and you’ll understand that it should be the least of your worries with everything else occurring in your life. Denied from your dream job? Go to the gym and realize that everything does happen for a reason. Every thought that you previously had racing through your mind before you started to break a sweat will now be wiped away by your feel-good endorphins and post-workout state of bliss.
Endorphins are among the brain chemicals known as neurotransmitters, which function to transmit electrical signals within the nervous system. When you exercise, your body releases chemicals called endorphins. These endorphins interact with the receptors in your brain that reduce your perception of pain. More importantly, endorphins also trigger a positive feeling in the body, similar to that of morphine.
Exercising daily will wake you up, reduce your stress, boost self-esteem, improve sleep, and diminish anxiety and depression. I assure you. Exercise has brought me out of the depths of my life. The dark, deep, and scary depths that I never thought I’d escape. So, what are you afraid of?
Is it a fear that others are judging you in the gym?
Because I can guarantee you that they’re not. They’re focused on their own lunge series, resistance, or weight setting. They’re not looking at your see-through white cotton T-shirt that’s soaked with sweat. They don’t realize that you don’t have any makeup on. They’re not thinking of you any differently because you have to take breaks in between sit-ups and push-ups.
Is it a fear that you won’t be good enough?
Because there is no standard for any workout. Any form of exercise will suffice, just as long as you feel good about yourself. Don’t compare your resistance on the elliptical with the person next to you – your bodies are completely different! Don’t get down when you only last 20 minutes on the treadmill while your superhuman of a friend can last over 90 minutes. Don’t fret when the 10 pound dumbbells turn your arms into jello. Everybody is different. Every BODY is different. No two hearts beat the same, nor do any two legs move the same.
Is it a fear that you won’t be able to run up that hill?
So what? Who cares? Not the cars on the road. Not the neighbors in the windows. And certainly not the squirrel staring you in the eye while it’s on a mission for it’s acorn. If you decide to walk up the hill, then you should own that incline. Make it your catwalk, because you will conquer it with your signature stomp, one sweaty stride at a time.
Is it a fear that you don’t have the mental strength?
While I know this can be one of mine sometimes after a tough day, I remember that nothing compares to the power of music and a good beat. Put in your headphones, blast some Chainsmokers, Kygo, or Taylor Swift, and keep your mind on the finish line, wherever and whatever that may be. Every beginning has an end, and the beauty of a workout is that you create those beginnings and ends.
Is it a fear that you’re too tired to even think about moving your arms and legs?
First, let the beat of the music move your legs. Check out my Spotify account if you need some fresh sounds and addicting beats (search: Eliza Dordelman). Find that one song that not only puts the pep in your step, but also makes you want to smile bigger, love more, and live longer. Even if you feel like you’re too tired to exercise, do it anyway. Give it a try, because the high from endorphins can’t compare to a sugar rush or caffeine trip.
Whatever the fear may be, it can’t possibly weigh more than the power and influence of endorphins that will carry you through the rest of your day and night. Push through the anxiety, concerns, and what ifs, and give those brain chemicals a shot at changing your body, mind, and soul.