How CrossFit Improves Your Mental Health
The reality for most people is that lots of people, ranging as high as one in four, struggle with their mental health. This can range from people with mild anxiety and depression to schizophrenia, severe depression, and bipolar disorder. And anyone can be affected, at any time.
Chances are someone you are close to is dealing with some form of mental health issue.
But where does CrossFit come into the issue of mental health?
Good question. We’ll answer that any much more below:
CrossFit & Mental Health
Do you feel burned out at work or overwhelmed by family life?
Are you looking for a productive way to break out of your routine?
Or maybe you are just looking for that next adventure…
Whatever it may be, CrossFit could be the perfect solution.
In a study on physical activity for mental health, the benefits of applying exercise to the treatment and prevention of many mental health issues could not be clearer.
Results included enhanced self-worth and mood to improved anxiety, depression, and stress.
Based on these results, we can see that exercise has been shown to improve mental health and overall quality of life. CrossFit can equal healthy mental health.
The Multiple Benefits of CrossFit
We hear it all the time:
Exercise isn’t just good for the body; it’s good for the mind too.
Not only does regular exercise improve body composition, but it also does all of the following:
- Increase fitness
- Reduce the risk of various health issues
- Exercise is also a tried and true way to both reduce stress
- Improve mental functioning
- Reduce anxiety and depression
- Helps with Insomnia (I’ve seen this first hand)
- And so much more.
Greg Glassman, the founder of CrossFit, explains CrossFit as a mixture of weightlifting, gymnastics, and metabolic conditioning.
It doesn’t focus on only one part of your body but rather on building your overall strength and fitness.
While there are a lot of great physical perks and a host of CrossFit body transformations, there are also a lot of mental benefits.
1. Stress Relief
After a long day, working out is one of the best ways to release stress.
Yes, that exercise ‘high’ does exist…
And it is one of the best ways to forget about your problems while also doing something good for your body.
When you’re in a great mood, no challenge seems impossible, and that pressure from work or home will seem less dramatic.
CrossFitter Jeryl Lippe said,
“I’m not here to say that because of CrossFit I don’t have anxiety, because I most definitely still do. But CrossFit has given me the opportunity to develop a healthy outlet for stress and nervous energy. I just don’t know what to do with it sometimes. And it’s made me realize I’m way stronger than I ever even knew.”
2. Support During Recovery
In recent years, the addiction treatment and recovery communities have started incorporating CrossFit training into addiction recovery programs as a way to divide a client’s focus between two sets of goals that are mutually beneficial: getting sober and getting fit.
Kristy Hagan said, “I wanted to drink or use drugs every minute of every day and I didn’t see a way out.”
But as she started incorporating CrossFit into her life, “that started to become part of my recovery.”
You can watch her story and see how CrossFit became an influential part of her recovery process. Watch her story below:
3. Better Sleep
When you’re not in a good mental or physical state, it can be hard to sleep. This sets up a vicious cycle, causing you to rely on caffeine in the morning and alcohol at night.
After a CrossFit workout, you might find yourself more tired than ever!
But you’ll sleep like a log and wake up feeling refreshed.
Endorphins aid in regulating our metabolism, they help us deal with pain, and they put us in a better mood.
Exercising releases a rush of these natural chemicals. So even if you’re a little sore, you’re bound to have a smile on your face!
Amy Kievit said, “Doing CrossFit is how I know I can stay well. As someone who has felt completely debilitated by mental illness, I can tell you that I would pay anything to never feel that way again.”
5. Improved Mental Toughness
You’re under stress during a tough workout, and you’re not sure if you’re going to be able to finish it.
But the community is there, pushing you to keep going, so you work through to the end.
CrossFit can teach you how to deal with pressure, and you take that with you everywhere else. Maybe at work, you have a deadline for a big project coming up.
You remember that workout that you weren’t sure you could finish in time, but also remember that you did it with everyone cheering you on.
You buckle down and get the project done in time because you realize that you ARE capable of producing quality work under pressure.
CrossFit helps you to find the tools to manage the stress and get you through it.
Experience The Benefits of Crossfit Today
So, if you’re considering getting into CrossFit, remember that there are mental as well as physical benefits that come along with it.
At Neuse River Crossfit, we work to utilize CrossFit to build a healthy, thriving, and active community.
We offer fitness programs designed for all ages and skill levels, combining a variety of functional movements that help athletes achieve what is considered the ultimate level of fitness. Our coaches are highly trained to give our members peace of mind that they are doing the right things to get the best results.
Here is a quick list of some of our offerings thought it does not include all:
- Adaptive Athletes – Neuse River Crossfit has for years been working with athletes with multiple different physical and mental injuries which cause some impairment. Through education and practice though, we have expanded our reach of this program by reaching athletes all over the world to shift the conversation to what is possible rather than impossible.
- River Ruckus Cardio Sculpt – Have you ever wanted to feel the burn? Our Ruckus program is designed to take the barbell out of your hands and focus on getting that cardio system in check! If you have ever done a Bootcamp style class before this might be right up your alley.
- CrossFit – Our flagship programs focus on health as a journey and not a destination. It is our core belief that everyone can be healthy. We do this by implementing the fundamental CrossFit modality of training: Constantly Varied Functional movements executed at high intensity completed over broad time. Simply put, this methodology works on the idea that you are constantly changing your routine and gives you the tools to build both strength and cardiovascular in that capacity.
- Kids on the River – We offer childcare while you enjoy a group class, lift weights, or work with a personal trainer. Through Kids on the River daycare, you can workout without worry. Kids will experience the fun and engaging opportunities they need and learn about healthy lifestyles, while you get your sweat on.
- Yoga – Every Thursday at 5:30 pm we host our Restorative Yoga with Coach Hailey. The gateway to your body’s potential is found in not just the strength you develop, but with the flexibility your body has to perform the movement.
- Personal Training – We all need a little one-on-one time to get things in order sometimes. We offer a simple no-frills approach to training. We can shift our programming to work towards your goals and help you identify areas for improvement. We offer single sessions or package deals so contact us today for more details!
- Strongman – Strongman or woman Training employs the simple idea of lifting heavy things for short periods of time. Primarily we focus on using tools like: axle bar, yoke, atlas stone, tire flips, vehicle pulls, logos, farmers carry, and even the occasional sandbag toss! The goal with the training in this methodology is to create large gains in explosive strength as well as slow-twitch muscle fiber.
As you can see, Neuse River Crossfit offers a variety of instructors, classes, people, and overall fun. So stop wasting your time and come on by.
If you want to be part of a gym that offers a family-like atmosphere and supports each other for a physically and mentally healthy lifestyle, CrossFit is right for you.
Join the Neuse River family today!