At first it’s normal to feel a little disheartened at the idea of working out after a mentally draining day, but regular exercise provides your body and mind with the stimulation to help relieve the stress of a long shift in the office.
There are a number of different workouts that can help with reducing stress from more calming exercises to high intensity ones.
More specifically, aerobic exercising causes plenty of mental benefits which helps reduce stress, such as releasing endorphins which are the body’s natural pain killers and reducing stress hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol.
Yoga poses are a form of flexibility training, but also involve some strength training as well.
So how can it be stress busting? Well, yoga also encourages deep breathing which triggers the body’s relaxation response, with some studies showing that yoga is great for reducing high blood pressure - which can also be linked to stress.
Yoga postures are great at strengthening your muscles which then, in turn, helps to relieve physical tension.
If you’re a little worried about going to a class for the first time, yoga is known for being fantastic for all fitness levels. No matter if you’re just starting out on your journey or an intermediate yogi, yoga is perfect for de-stressing after a long day.
Pilates introduces you to the core muscles you didn’t even know you had.
It has a similar concentration level to yoga, yet some would argue more Pilates is more challenging as it’s about strengthening rather than flexibility.
According to the NHS there is also evidence to suggest that Pilates can help reduce back pain by strengthening the muscles as it tends to involve some sort of weights, stretch bands or gym balls.
However, as mentioned previously, if your body is stressed you will naturally have adrenaline and cortisol pumping around in there. Another way to de-stress is to use these hormones to your advantage and engage your muscles in a full body burn.
3. Jump Squats
They’re a killer but completely worth the grind.
Jump squats have a number of benefits. Squats in general help to build muscle, but not just in your legs - in your entire body.
They promote an anabolic environment in your body which encourages body-wide muscle building, which in turn will make everyday activities easier and cause less strain on the body.
Engaging your leg muscles and glutes, jump squats allow you to put all your energy into throwing you up as high as your legs will let you, testing your endurance but enabling you to put all your frustration into this work out.
4. Mountain climbers
Mountain climbers are next level planks. They’re a test of endurance and a great exercise when your weights are occupied in the gym.
The basic move is great for beginners, but more experienced exercisers can take things up a notch with variations using sliding disks or foot switching.
With this exercise your quads will get a workout as they’re the primary part of the body you’ll be moving, but your core and arms will be tested too.
After completing this exercise, you're sure to feel a sense of accomplishment, which will help minimise the feelings of stress.
5. Foam Roll
Ok, so this isn’t exactly a workout, but it is a key part in helping your muscles recover by stimulating blood flow and helping your body along in the repairing and growing process.
Adding this to the end of your workout helps to alleviate soreness and most importantly promotes relaxation, essentially rolling the stress away.
Foam rollers help prevent injury and can make everyday moving a little bit easier after a tough work out.