Jack Stolte of Capital Health spoke about exercise and mood at our May 25 meeting. Jack, an Exercise Physiologist as well as an Exercise Specialist, gave us an overview on the importance of exercise with the focus on why it’s more about a life change: doing something you like by starting slowly (with your doctors approval) and building up to 2-½ hours a week aerobically with strength training 2–3 times a week. Stretching, proper breathing and keeping hydrated are all key to your exercise routine. Setting goals and exercising with someone will help you keep track of your progress as well as making it more enjoyable.
Data from epidemiological studies suggest an association between physical activity and reduced levels of depression. This is not, however, conclusive because studies done to date are hampered by small sample size, poor definition and assessment of depression, and insufficient follow up of participants. Well-designed clinical trials are needed to define the type, frequency, intensity, and duration of exercise that is most effective in alleviating depressive symptoms.
Jack answered questions from the group’s participants as we went along. He gave us literature on exercise & mood with a page devoted to the benefits of daily physical activity.