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The Best Benefits of Exercise in Drug Rehab

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Recovery is about replacing abusive habits with healthy ones. One of the healthiest habits you can get into is establishing even a moderate exercise routine. It turns out that exercise is a regular part of most Washington State drug rehab programs because it helps addicts recover faster and stay sober longer.

This article explores the role of exercise in addiction treatment. How can exercise be used as part of a holistic approach to treatment in drug rehab?

Sweating it Out in Washington State Drug Rehab

For alcoholics, exercise during treatment is crucial. That is because alcohol causes a chemical disruption in the brain that releases dopamine, a “feel-good” chemical.

Studies suggest that regular exercise improves mood and helps with disorders such as clinical depression and alcohol addiction. The trick is that exercising also entices your body to release endorphins and dopamine. Those chemicals have a number of benefits, including helping patients with clinical depression, according to a number of clinical studies reviewed by the National Institute of Health. NIH concluded:

Many studies have examined the efficacy of exercise to reduce symptoms of depression, and the overwhelming majority of these studies have described a positive benefit associated with exercise involvement. 

Whether you are clinically depressed or not, entering a drug rehab is a powerfully emotional time. Healing the body and mind is exactly why you are in treatment. In fact, in many cases, the body is your most powerful weapon when trying to heal.

Benefits of Exercise in Washington State Drug Rehab

What are the benefits for your mind when you engage in even moderate exercise during Washington State drug rehab?

  1. Improved mood. You’ve heard of a “runner’s high?” Those are endorphins and they help you regain and retain a more positive attitude.
  2. Better sleep at night. It is those endorphins again. Exercise can provide a diminished perception of pain and can also act as a sedative, which will help you to sleep deeper and feel more refreshed when you wake.
  3. Less stress. Exercise can also help you cope with the feelings of stress or anxiety that naturally come with weaning your body off of drugs or alcohol.
  4. It reduces body fat and builds bones, muscle tone, and strength.
  5. It improves your energy.
  6. It lowers blood pressure.
  7. It makes you look as good as it makes you feel.

So, what are the forms of exercise you can expect in Washington State drug rehab? While the answer to that depends on the facility you enter, here are some activities that will help you feel better during your stay:

  • Walking
  • Yoga
  • Biking
  • Jogging
  • Low-impact aerobics
  • Swimming
  • Gardening
  • Biking
  • Weight or strength training

Interestingly, because there is a social element in most Washington State drug rehab facilities, having an exercise buddy will also help encourage and comfort you. Perhaps you will engage in group sports as part of your treatment. Whether working out solo or in a group, exercise is crucial to reduce your cravings, change your mood and help keep you sober.

To learn more about how exercise is part of a holistic approach to addiction treatment in Washington and Oregon drug rehab, contact us today!