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How to Exercise When Depressed — Even if You Prefer Staying in Bed

Want to treat your depression quickly, safely and for free? Exercise!

It works, has no side effects (unless you really overexert yourself) and is great for your mental and physical well-being in every respect. In fact, a recent review of over 26 years of research shows that moderate physical activity each day — even something as simple as gardening — can prevent depression in all age groups, not just treat it. So exercise as part of a depression treatment strategy really is a no-brainer!

But let’s face it, you don’t really want to exercise, do you? I know that feeling. Maybe you’re reading this article as part of a desperate effort not to do any physical activity!

5 Comments to
How to Exercise When Depressed — Even if You Prefer Staying in Bed

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  1. The mail is about 12 kilometers of my house! 😛

  2. I think the biggest problem for me when I’m in depression is the deep apathy. Suddenly I just don’t care any more. Who cares if I’m gaining a pound a week for no reason and who cares if I’m probably going to die of a heart attack? Depression isn’t sadness, it’s apathy. Who cares if getting up and moving will make me feel better?

    My mail box is right outside the front door nailed to the house, so that wouldn’t get me far.

    Really the very best strategy I’ve found is having an exercise partner. I have two ladies I walk with at work every day for 30 minutes during break. At home I have my 23 month old son (yes! he loves going for walks! He walked 2 miles in a 5k with me in Septemer. He walked, not riding the stroller!) It’s hard to say no to a 23 month old pulling you to the door while saying in a cute little voice, “walk? walk?” That knowing getting my butt out of my chair will negate a temper tantrum, which is good for everyone.

    Maybe it’s not considered the best advice, but I think sometimes you’re more likely to move forward for others than yourself. And sometimes, if that is what gets you moving it’s better than not. The more you move the more your body craves it. Once your body starts to desire it, and it becomes habit, then you no longer have this fight with yourself. And that’s the key. You are actually changing your brain when you do these things and if the first step means a walking buddy, I don’t think that’s such a bad thing.

  3. I call it Dognitive Behavioral Therapy. I have to walk my dogs. They are really exercising me. At the very least, I have to go outside and pick up after them. I am going through a really rough patch, but I just keep doing by Dognitive Behavioral Therapy — I keep walking.

  4. Ok. so the title was a little misleading. I am one who prefers to stay in bed and reading the title, I thought maybe that there were exercises that one could do while staying in bed. but no. this article says you have to get out of bed. Somedays I get out of bed to go to the bathroom, eat some sort of protein and get a fresh bottle of water and go right back into bed and back onto the internet. I live alone and don’t want pets. I have plants but since I live on the coast, the air is wet enough to where I really only have to water them once a month. I do tend to get out more during the first week of the month cuz that’s when funds come in and rent is due. towards the second half of the month when groceries and bought and money is spent for the month, I tend to stay in my apt and stay in bed, especially during the cold seasons. obviously I am procrastinating getting out of bed for a pit stop by typing this. :)

    • Having struggled with bipolar and depression my whole life, the main key I’ve learned is that your prison may not have any bars but it has a name: Depression. You sound like you’re in solitary cell block of this invisible prison and don’t realize you’re the warden holding the keys. Meds, therapists, psychiatrists are all there to offer support. But in the end only you have the keys to getting yourself out of bed and moving.

      After so many years in solitary confinement it’s not an easy task. You have got to find something other than groceries to convince yourself to move outward. My mother-in-law, who was in a similar prison, said she felt anxiety sitting in her own living room during her darkest depression. Her key ended up being taking comfort from inspirational sayings. Some were famous or out of places such as the Bible or Shakespear or songs on the radio. Others were those she came up with herself, or heard other people say. She wrote them on construction paper with markers in flowery lettering and began to hand them around her room. Then down the hall, and eventually all rooms of the house. It was her armor and slowly got her out of bed and back into the world.

      Now the doesn’t need them any more, but it was inspritational to see her find this key within herself.

      I hope you can find the keys and get back into the world.



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