Does Exercise Make You Less Anxious?

The Well blog on the NY Times reports studies that show exercise makes you less anxious. One study of laboratory rats showed that exercise creates new brain cells that are functionally different from existing cells in anxiety-induced rats. The new cells created from running did not have the characteristics of existing cells that had anxiety genes. Thus, the conclusion tentatively reached is that exercise produced a calming effect.

It’s not clear how this might translate to human brains but some studies show anxious humans benefit from exercise, according to the Well. Runners on the site report an elevated mood after running even as they experience physical fatigue.

The studies leave many questions unanswered. To my way of thinking this is one: If God had wanted us to run to feel good, why did he give us motorcycles?

(Update : A viewer on YouTube pointed out the configuration of the headlights on my new, used BMW make it a different model number than I attribute. The correct model is R1150GS. After checking the documents I realize the bike is an 1150. It’s still a great ride by any other number.)

(This morning I posted a short video of my first ride on a new-to-me BMW R 1100 GS down the Natchez Trace Parkway. I’ve been riding since I was 12. I was also a runner. Riding is a lot more fun.)

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