How do you push yourself to exercise when you are feeling depressed?

Rosimara Q.
I Think about how much better i felt after i've exercised in the past. On really bad days i tell myself to just do 15minutes and then see how i feel. Those days i make sure i drink water while walking and go slow. Most times after 15min i decide to keep going – I also think about what i ate during the day and how much water ive had.

Norman Z.
Say to yourself that you will only do one exercise. Starting is the most difficult part. I'm always dreading to start my workout, but once i have done 1 exercise I tell myself I can do 1 more and so on. After a workout I always feel more refreshed and certainly more happy. You can do this! I believe in you!

Loeci Q.
Leaving the house, start to walk and don't stop, if you need to walk for an hour, walk for an hour, you Will feel better

Dick S.
I'm not really dealing with depression, so I can only tell you what works for me on my bad days. When I really don't want to leave my bed or the couch, the only thing that makes me get up is knowing that I'll enjoy the exercises. I run outside, and I enjoy being active outside, even when it is in the city. Find something that you like a lot and when you did it a few times, it will make the step to get going smaller and smaller.

Francis E.
It's hard to push yourself when feeling low. I remind myself that just lying on the sofa or staying in bed is not actually going to help in the long run. In fact, it makes me procrastinate more, or feel more stagnant. So this motivates me to just get up, and go out. Exercise when I'm feeling really low has to be more about self – care, so I usually choose to have a good walk in my favourite place with my dog, like the woods or near a local lake. I get fresh air, steps and appreciation for what's around me. It always does the trick.

Amelia E.
Depression is a very difficult state of mind and it’s understandable that there’s no immediate desire to exercise. Everyone would prefer to be not depressed and a big part of reinstating happiness when depressed is to raise endorphin levels. Exercise is great at this because it provides a ‘natural high’ along with a sense of accomplishment. Make the exercise something that suits your depression. If you need time and space, go for a long walk or run. Even a short walk or run will help immensely. If you need to get out of your head, do something explosive and all encompassing like a HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) workout, boxing, or sprints. If you can get someone to exercise with as well this will be of great benefit both physically and mentally.
What counts is getting moving, even just a little, to help lift the depression. Best of luck at beating the Black Dog!!!

Rouven U.
Don’t over think it and you just go anyway. I run. I always feel better once I’ve been and it helps lift any low mood. You can work out the low mood. And make sure you have your exercise clothes and kit ready from the night before. Makes it easier to just go and do it . Good luck

Aaron E.
In my personal experience, when feelings of depression are part of the day, there are two views to the exercising routine:
(1) exercising can help overcome depression, and you know that by doing it, will help you feel better, whether it is cardio or yoga or dancing;
(2) exercising is not a tool for managing depression, therefor it becomes a burden; the trick is to manage your thoughts and not view exercise like a task or a to do on the agenda for the day. Most of the times I try to re-engineer my thinking, instead of saying "I have to…", I rephrase into "I need / get / enjoy to…". I also try to visualize myself after the exercise: more alive, better strength, more motivation, more relaxed, less tensed. If I exercise in the night, which is my usual time, I tend to think over it all day long, sort of dreading the moment, which is why I usually set a fixed timing for exercising (say 8 PM) and know that until that time, I have a lot of other things to do between work and exercise, keeping my mind busy. Before starting the routine, I do some pep talk to myself (encouraging affirmations), put some music, a bit of mindful preparation ahead just to get the mind accustomed. And of course, I make it a commitment, by asking a friend or boyfriend to held me accountable for missing out on workouts.

Dave Z.
When I'm depressed it's difficult to exercise, I can keep it up if I gather the strength to start, one I'm going or doing it's easy to keep on with you habit

Karla Y.
I think of how much worse I feel when I miss opportunities to manage things I am in control of, just because of how depressed I feel about things I am not in control of. It may not feel entertaining on some days but I try to go with the flow and stick to my routine if I cannot do any better. That way it will be ok if on occasions I really need the day off. I will have the day off and will be able to enjoy it too as a deserved treat.

Amelia J.
Acknowledge what you’re feeling and if possible, identify what’s causing your depression. If you feel that you’re experiencing a more serious problem, GET HELP. ASAP. You’re not alone in this. There are people/professionals that can help you. If it’s just as simple as the weather getting colder and you’re feeling the winter blues, remind yourself again of why you wanted exercise as part of your life. Think of exercise as a reward or treat that you deserve. Then get changed to workout clothes. Put on your work out shoes. Put on some great workout music. Lay out your mats and your dumbbells. Then get your groove on. Dance around or shake your body. Getting started is the hardest part. Once you get past all these, your mind shifts and all that’s left is to do the deed.

Daniel P.
Yes, its a must. But if your just for the sake of doing it you won't benefit any more than saying you "half-assed" it. But if your in a solid routine already missing a day will not hurt you buy your pride

Thies C.
A lot of the time I don't and I sit and wallow. I don't even get out of my pyjamas justifying that I need the break. However, today I started to feel that urge again, but instead of wallowing I took the time to do 15 minutes of yoga and was amazed by how much better I felt. So for me I'm going to focus on that good feeling a remember it each time I feel the urge to wallow in my depression.

Melvin S.
I know it will take my mind off things and that I will feel better afterwards, both for the endorphins and for the knowledge I managed to get my exercise in.

Christina E.
Discipline. Motivation is not reliable. Sorry I don't have a more immediate/magical cure but…. depression isn't magically lifted 🙁
Celebrate every little successes. Have smaller exercises for those particularly rough days, so you'll be able to celebrate something nevertheless.
If you have depression and you manage to do exercise every (or most) days (even small, eg. 5 minutes of stretching) then you are awesome and celebrate your huge achievement!!! Go you!

Carol N.
Sometimes I just don't. Sometimes it's okay to not exercise if you're not feeling well. In that case, I watch something uplifting, like a KDrama, or some good vibes music, like "Better When I'm Dancing" by Meaghan Trainer. If that doesn't work, then I choose another time of the day to work out. But mainly, I just tell myself: "You know you always feel good after exercise, mentally." I don't let being depressed get to me (and I've had depression as well), life is too short to be like that. So even when I don't want to exercise, I push myself with that thought. I personally never feel motivated, nor do I have the desire to do anything, and I might still have a light depression. But I am working to overcome that too. If anyone has any good words to say to me, it would be nice to hear. Hopefully something that would surprise, a solution I never thought of before.

Capucine Q.
When I feel bleh about exercise, I just decide to do just 5 minutes. I really like Leslie Sansone's walks, and she has a few 5 minute walks on YouTube. I do one, and I start to feel better. Then I go ahead and do a 15 minute walk with her and by the time I am finished, my endorphins are flowing and I am in a much better mood. She is very chatty and on days I am down, it does help to pull me out of the doldrums. Hope that helps!

Jonas P.
Sometimes it's enough to remind myself that the endorphins will help me afterwards. But usually, I'll try to watch a motivational fitness video (something with pumped music) or look through some #fitblr to remind me that I *want* to exercise for me, to be a healthier & more radiant me. When that's not enough, just do anything. One pushup is better than none. Show your depression that it hasn't won. And then treat yourself (hot shower, something) for whatever you managed. Small victories are still victories.

Jonathan Y.
Excercising is hard for me normally, so I try to walk as much as possible, even if I have an option to drive. When I'm stressed, walking clears my head and makes me feel like I have accomplished something

Tracey S.
I scale it back and start really small. Just by stretching my neck and hands. Then, once that’s done, I try to at least make sure my core is a little warm. Usually that starts some sort of small stretching routine I remember. Sometimes good enough is good enough.

Ken O.
That is a great question, and one that I have struggled with as well. I try to think of the benefits that will come with exercise, such as the endorphins produced in my brain. I also give myself a little reward incentive. For example, I love Nestle's high protein chocolate milk, so before a workout I tell myself I can go to the store and get it after my run. I've also done this with meals or snacks. Hope this helps!

Deann T.
I don't really feel sad when I'm about to excersise. I usually just get over it (Or something!). I do horse-riding in the weekends, even if I'm already tired enough—it had become a habit of mine! Other days, I either have sports classes at school—which I don't like much—, but I like spending my breaks between classes outside, walking, running (usually with a friend). But when I do feel down, I chat with someone (or talk to my friend)—or eat chocolate. It had been proved that chocolate can boost your mood. I think it's quite an easier way to just—too—move around; or dance!

Engelbert Z.
I often remind my mind everyday of trying my best to reach the targets and harvest success seeds on my journey to the end. Love from City land kingdom./.

Ella P.
Great question thank you.. I always think about how I feel after I exercise and visualise that feeling of celebrating my health.

Katie Z.
I remind myself that I dont have to feel like doing something in order to do it. I dont have to enjoy every second of my day. I remind myself that every moment and emotion has a beginning and an end. I also try to think about how future me will appreciate my hard work and dedication. I let myself know that later me will feel the benefits and that it can kick start or fuel the rest of my day with positive energy. I tell myself that the more I dont feel like doing it the more I probably need to do it.

Elaine S.
There is no easy answer you just got to do it.
Preparation is your best help. If you are going for a walk make sure everything is ready to put on including waterproof gear just in case. If first thing in the morning put it all on as soon as you are up. Dont go for the dressing gown.

Hans Friedrich U.
Me gusta hacer ejercico por que Al terminar me siento con energia y lista para mi dia ademas me permite hacer in mejor plan de Las actividades siguientes.

Lidia S.
I think about how well I will do in the future and even if things are bad now I can work on myself for a better future hope it works for you too!

Sander E.
Once it's in my routine, I commit to it, then I feel almost guilty not going. I'll give myself some space to reduce length or weights to make it a more reasonable goal to achieve. I will also try to give myself small goals to achieve before, during and after the workout so It's easier to feel like you have accomplished something. Even like putting your sport gear on is a goal.