How Exercise Affects Mental Performance

Peter GaffneyBlog, Health & Wellbeing

How Exercise Affects Mental Performance PGPT | Mobile Personal Training in London

Active Body, Active Mind

When writing one of my more recent blogs, I was struck by what a lot of people call “writer’s block” or “brain fog”. My mind felt cloudy and I couldn’t stay focused on the task at hand. I was finding it very difficult to maintain my train of thought and was constantly being distracted. This feeling is something that affects everyone in their daily lives. However there is a very simple solution that can help anyone improve their mental performance: Exercise.

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I can always tell on the days when I have already done exercise that I feel more attentive, more creative and very productive when it comes to writing or even just admin work for PGPT. The same goes for anyone, no matter if you’re working a 9-to-5 office job, creating a work of art or serving in a restaurant. Exercise goes a long way towards helping improve your mental performance throughout the day, all thanks to a few simple but helpful benefits.

Cut Out “The Noise”

Firstly, exercise is key in cutting out what I like to call the “Noise”. In this age of technology, there is so much external stimulation from the internet, social media, television and advertising at home and on your daily commute; it can sometimes seem like information overload. Spending even thirty minutes a day putting your phone on silent, leaving the house and going to a gym, exercise class or for a run is an excellent way to separate your mind from this “Noise” and clear your thoughts to concentrate on things that matter, like your home life and work.

Get Your Blood Pumping

The most direct benefit of exercise is to get your blood pumping and muscles working, which has the same effect on your mind as on your body. The brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a chemical released into the brain when your body is in motion and this has been scientifically proven to stimulate and sharpen your mental reflexes, memory and concentration. In addition, the release of natural painkillers and reward hormones and increased heart rate resulting from exercise can improve your mood! Exercising during the day can also make it easier to feel tired and ready for bed in the evening, resulting in a more peaceful sleep and a feeling of invigoration in the morning.

Take a Breather

The final thing I’ve found for increasing mental energy is the exposure to fresh air experienced during outdoor exercise. Similarly to the benefits you can find from distancing yourself from technology, getting outside is a great way to clear your mind and focus on the singular act of your exercise. Whether you’re taking in the weather and scenery along a run or simply doing a stationary workout in a peaceful place like a park, getting a breath of fresh air while exercising is an easy and natural way to relax your mind and body. Commuting by running, cycling or even walking can kill two birds with one stone in this respect, as it allows you to exercise out in the open during your journey to or from work (not to mention beating the queues for the bus or the tube!).

How Can PGPT Help?

We have been helping busy Londoners reap the benefits of exercise in their daily work lives since 2007. We always encourage clients to do at least 30 minutes of exercise every morning, and the ones that do experience a great boost to their concentration, productivity and alertness during their hectic work days. Mental performance is a big part of any job, so why not see how we could provide the motivation, encouragement and fitness plans you need to make exercise an integral part of your daily life?

Peter Gaffney

Peter has had fitness running through his veins his whole life. Having grown up in sunny Australia, sport was instilled from a very young age. Now living and owning a personal training company in London Peter combines his love of fitness with his proven methods to get client results every time.