CDC finds nearly 41% of respondents in survey
Report negative mental health issues due to COVID
Strenuous exercise has been shown to relieve anxiety, depression and fear, according to leading Orangetheory Fitness coach in Tampa.
TAMPA, Fla. (Aug.14, 2020) – A survey released Thursday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that almost 41% of respondents are struggling with mental health issues stemming from the coronavirus pandemic – both related to the pandemic itself and the measures put in place to contain it, including physical distancing and stay-at-home orders.
According to Zack Bell, the west Florida regional fitness coach with Orangetheory Fitness studios, strenuous exercise can relieve the emotional and psychological effects, including anxiety, depression and fear, caused by the stresses of the pandemic, economic downturn, racial tensions and political uncertainties.
In the online survey of more than 5,400 adults living in the U.S. conducted during the last week of June, 40.9% of respondents reported at least one mental or behavioral health condition:
• 31% said they’d experienced symptoms of anxiety or depression
• 26% said they’d experienced trauma or stressor-related disorder symptoms
• 13% said they’d started or increased substance use
• 11% said they’d seriously considered suicide in the last 30 days
“Exercise is medicine,” said Bell, M.Ed. Pn1 (Precision Nutrition Level 1). “It has proven physical benefits, of course, but the mental, psychological and emotional benefits also are notable and documented.
“Exercise also provides us with perspective. During and after a workout, you may ask, ‘that thing that was stuck in my head, or has bothered me for days, what is that really, and is it worth the investment from me?’ The positive stresses of strenuous exercise have a way of minimizing the distractions of our pandemic world. And, exercise also provides you with struggle, which is required for us to improve. Every time you struggle with the discomfort of hard exercise, you are growing and improving, and making positive investments in your mental bank,” Bell said.
According to the Mayo Clinic:
• Exercise increases your overall health and your sense of well-being, which puts more pep in your step every day. But exercise also has some direct stress-busting benefits.
• Physical activity helps bump up the production of your brain’s feel-good neurotransmitters, called endorphins.
The CDC also (CDC) advises that some benefits of physical activity on brain health happen right after a session of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity. The CDC says regular physical activity can help keep your thinking, learning, and judgment skills sharp as you age. It can also reduce your risk of depression and anxiety and help you sleep better.
“Workouts like OTF also provide an opportunity for personal success, whether that be demonstrating consistency, displaying strength, overcoming obstacles, or simply committing to being better one moment at a time,” said Bell. “This workout and others like it can provide you with small victories. Moving forward is as simple as one foot after another, but simple is not always easy. Small victories won in group exercise get you moving in the right direction.”
Orangetheory Fitness makes it simple to get more life from your workout. Launching in 2010, franchisees have opened over 1,200 studios in 50 U.S. states and 22 countries. Orangetheory has developed a unique approach to fitness that blends a unique trifecta of science, coaching, and technology that work together seamlessly to elevate participants’ heart rates to help burn more calories.