The Marine Corps considers physical fitness to be vital for Marines and their family members’ health. Although it’s a job requirement for Marines, the benefits go beyond the scope of the job. Did you know that just 20 minutes of moderate exercise can help combat feelings related to stress and improve your mood?

What is mental health, you may ask?
Mental health is how we think, act, interact with the world, and view the world. It’s how we manage our daily lives, including our daily stressors.

How does exercise benefit you?
Whether you are a Marine or spouse, exercise can boost your physical health and mood. Running is a great example. Studies indicate exercise reduces stress, releases those feel-good chemicals such as endorphins and dopamine, increases self-esteem, and even improves your brain functioning. On the other hand, lack of exercise can be associated with the development of behavioral health issues.

Putting your health at the top of the list.
Finding time to exercise is essential for staying mentally fit. Sometimes when we are tired from life’s daily tasks, the last thing we want to do is go for a run or hop on a cardio machine. With our busy lives, it can be difficult to take care of ourselves. But if we don’t, we have little left in our reserve tank for others. So get out there, get active, have fun, and release those endorphins!

For more information on mental wellbeing, please reach out to your local Community Counseling Center or the DSTRESS line, which is available to support 24/7.