Don’t you just love that rush of euphoria, or that energised buzz, you get during and after a workout? That energised, happy and alert feeling that you just can’t explain to someone who hasn’t experienced it for themselves?
Exercise has many physical benefits, including improved health, strength, flexibility and of course keeping us looking and feeling fantastic, however there are also a lot of chemical changes that are occurring internally that have a positive effect on how we are feeling both mentally and emotionally.
These are those fab hormones and chemicals that are responsible for that happy exercise high we feel during and after a good workout:
Serotonin - Serotonin has a number of responsibilities including prompting restful sleep, encouraging a healthy appetite, and producing clarity, alertness and a sense of happiness. This is why serotonin is considered one of your ‘happy hormones’.
Endorphins - Endorphins are chemicals produced in the pituitary gland located at the base of the brain. These chemicals work to block sensations of discomfort or pain, which assists you when you are pushing yourself during exercise. Endorphins also produce a feeling of euphoria, which is why they are also considered one of your ‘happy hormones’.
Dopamine - Dopamine, considered another ‘happy hormone’, is a neurotransmitter and precursor to adrenaline. Providing a feeling of pleasure, dopamine production is stimulated both through exercise and through eating. So this is a great reason to keep your body moving!
Epinephrine - Epinephrine is another name for adrenaline and is produced by the body in anticipation of, or during exercise and causes the heart to beat faster. This in turn pumps more oxygen rich blood around the entire body ensuring you can keep on working harder for longer!
Another product of exercise is the increased production of growth factors, including insulin, hepatocytes and fibroblasts, which are hormone-like compounds that work in conjunction with other cells to stimulate the production and regulation of muscle cells.
So keep your body moving towards a happier and healthier you!