After Bariatric Surgery: How Does Exercise Effect Your Emotions?
Before your surgery, what did your leisurely routine look like? A couch, a television, your favorite savory snack? Did you sit down to watch a few minutes of television to rewind from your day and end up sitting around for hours wondering where the time went?
How many times did you tell yourself, “you know what, tomorrow I’m going to start that gym membership I’ve been putting off,” only to let fatigue take over and end up right back on that couch saving your ambitions for the next day?
Before you know it, you look in the mirror and no longer recognize the person you’ve become. You’ve gained more weight than you’ve ever imagined – it is time to make a change so you have weight loss surgery. You’re not atypical. It is so easy to fall into a repetitive routine of laziness. That is why many people were and are in the same position as yourself.
Now ask yourself, how did your routine make you feel? Were you sad? Tired? Anxious? Did you lack motivation? How about energy? Yes, these are feelings you know all too well. Now why is that?
You weren’t exercising. Now why is that so important?
- Humans are meant to move. When you sit around you’re actually fighting against hundreds of thousands of years of human instinct. According to Psychology Today, “humans exist as potentials for creating and becoming patterns of movement that establish relationships with sources of sustenance, whatever and wherever they may be.” Our hunter-gatherer ancestors developed physical traits that allowed them to catch their food, the ability and necessity to move for long periods of time being one of these physical traits – eventually becoming instinct. Western Civilization’s rapid change to a work or leisure environment that enables sitting or lack of movement for long periods of time hasn’t allowed time for our bodies to adapt and cope with the lack of movement that we now engage in every day. According to Psychology Today, “humans are a capacity to sense and respond to the movements that move them in ways that promote their own ongoing movement. Exercising this kinetic creativity is not only exceptionally useful, it generates feelings of well-being.”
- Exercise generates “happy” chemicals in our brains. When you exercise, your brain releases serotonin, endorphins and dopamine. According to Medical News Today, serotonin helps regulate a number of important health factors: mood and social behavior, appetite and digestion, sleep behavior and sexual desire. Endorphins help reduce pain and stress. They serve as a sort of natural opioid for your body. Dopamine relates directly with your bodies communication with the brain and many negative bodily functions correlate with low dopamine levels. Low levels of these chemicals are commonly found in those struggling with anxiety and depression.
- It’s a healthy distraction. When you sit around it’s easy to fall into negative thought patterns that fester and become repetitive. Have you ever sat around stressing about something because you didn’t have anything else to think about? When you exercise it gives you a mechanism to shift your mind away from the stresses that burden you every day. Instead, you’re focusing on something that you know will better yourself. This leads to increased motivation and confidence as your body improves.
Do yourself a favor and kick the habit of sitting around. Your body and brain will thank you for regularly exercising. That, coupled with healthy nutritional choices will take your post-bariatric body to places you’ve never dreamed of. Remember as a bariatric patient you need to take a complete bariatric multivitamin daily as well to maintain your health. Vita4Life bariatric vitamins are a comprehensive multivitamin that helps supply your body with the necessary vitamins and minerals you need. Vita4Life Vitamins for bariatric surgery are also a great supplement to take to alongside your regular workout regimen to help facilitate healthy muscle growth and recovery. Now get out there and exercise to feel better!