Benefits of Exercise in Addiction Recovery

As a 27 year old, I had never exercised regularly in my life. But that all changed when I began walking 8 to 12,000 steps daily for work – it was like the missing piece of the puzzle clicked into place! Not only did this help me stay free from addiction but also made me feel fit and healthy; words can’t describe how amazing it felt to be taking charge of my physical well being. Even now if I don’t stick with those routines in some form or other, both mentally and physically things start slipping back towards where they were before.

Here are some benefits of exercise in addiction recovery:

Relieves Stress

Because hey, life is stressful. Especially coping with all the newfound shit your having to deal with being sober right?

Fights Cravings

This one was huge for me. Still is. If I don’t exercise daily I can feel myself slipping mentally into a bad frame of mind.

Improves Mood

Exercise produce those natural “feel good” chemicals in our brains that we would have typically sought in drugs.

Keeps You Busy

It gives us something productive to do. We need to find things to keep us busy. Helps keep our minds off of all the negative emotions that are overwhelming us.

Improves Focus

When we regularly exercise and take care of our bodies our mental health becomes naturally better as well. Which in return equals better focus on tasks.

Better Sleep

Having problems with sleep is not uncommon in recovery. Many people find that a exercise routine helps them restore a normal sleep schedule. I find this especially true in early recovery. I had very disturbing nightmares in the beginning. Exercise helped me with this a lot.

In summary, exercise can be the perfect coping mechanism for fighting cravings, relieving stress and tension, and improving mood and focus. Exercise benefits addiction recovery by helping those who struggle with their cravings while distancing themselves from addictive behaviors. Not to mention, it also helps keep you occupied, keeps your mind sharp and your body active, and encourages better sleeping habits. With all of these powerful elements at work, it’s time we got off our asses and exercised more! When we engage in physical activity – even if that is something as simple as going for a short walk – we give ourselves the opportunity to take responsibility for our own well-being. Don’t just wait around to pass the time; take action right now to do something good for your mental health and overall well-being!

Start somewhere. Anywhere. By the way, I think the word “motivation” is a lie. I think it’s all about being disciplined. I don’t believe anyone wakes up in the morning and is just dying to work out or exercise. The sooner we quit making ourselves think that “we just can’t find the motivation” the better off we will be. I am definitely guilty of this kind of thinking.

Thanks for reading. Stay Strong.


2 responses to “Benefits of Exercise in Addiction Recovery”

  1. Mary Lackey Avatar
    Mary Lackey


  2. Brett Ann Stanciu Avatar

    Great advice! Well worth following!

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