Running and Walking for Mental Health

Published: May 4, 2021

By Monica Boone for RTBR

Mental health is just as important as physical health. Walking and running have positive effects on physical health, but what about mental health? A quick run or walk each day can improve your focus, productivity and mood.

Running and walking don’t cost anything. You don’t need a gym or fancy equipment. You can simply step outside and go! You can run or walk anywhere, any time and with anyone.

Clear your mind
  • Use your run or walk as alone time to focus on your well-being and enjoy your workout.
  • You could also use this time to decompress after a long day and separate work life from home life.
Unplug and recharge
  • A walk or run is the perfect way to get out of the house and away from all the screens you are interacting with right now.
  • Sure, you can listen to a podcast or call a friend but remember this is your time for a break from looking at the tv, computer and phone.
Explore the great outdoors
  • Get some fresh air and spend some time in nature. Take in the blue sky, hear the birds chirping, smell the fresh-cut grass and see all of the beautiful plants in full bloom.
  • Take a walk around a park you haven’t visited yet or go for a run downtown. New outside adventures are waiting for you to explore.
Take a break during the day
  • Step outside to soak up some vitamin D from the sun during these difficult times.
  • Exercising increases blood flow to the brain. It improves cognitive function, increases productivity and boosts creativity. When you go back to work, you’ll feel ready to tackle the rest of your day.
Feel better
  • Exercise releases endorphins and other chemicals that help the brain’s response to different situations including stress, anxiety and depression.
  • Going for a walk or a run improves your mood, self-esteem and confidence.

What have you done to take care of your mental health lately? In a world full of chaos, remember to treat yourself well.