One of the natural and most dependable cures to depression and stress is exercise. Practically and ideally, holistically, getting exercise should be part of your day. By being a pedestrian or a bicyclist in everyday life, you are going to set an upward spiral for energetic health. Breathing in fresh (hopefully) air, taking in the scenery, traveling with scents of soil, flowers, cafes, etc. makes your commute such a different experience. Modes of traveling that increase circulation also balance endorphins, those magical happiness chemicals that synthesize in one’s bloodstream. Reportedly, bicycling also balances the right and left hemispheres of the brain.
Now there’s also news that new research shows bicyclists have the best mood of all types of commuters.
Streetsblog reports, “of all transportation modes, cycling evokes the most positive mood.” Referencing the academic abstract from Spinger Link, Angie Schmitt explains:
Researchers from Clemson and the University of Pennsylvania surveyed 13,000 randomly selected people about their mood during random activities throughout the day.
Contrary to previous research, they found that mood was not significantly affected simply because people were traveling from place to place; those in transport were about as happy as average during the day.
When it came to different modes of transportation, the impacts were slight and not statistically significant. Still, researchers found that cycling elicited the most positive emotions. They also said this might reflect that people who are generally more fit and enthusiastic are attracted to biking in the first place.
Well, this is an idea. I believe many people are attracted to bicycling regardless of whether they are ‘fit’ or not. It’s a great and easy way for people to get fit, and some doctors are encouraging such activities at this time, even writing prescriptions for bicycle shares. It has long been received as a normal mode of transportation in some places in the country — not simply for the driven bicyclist — but the number of such cities is increasing.
Even moderate exercise serves to move ‘stagnation’ out of the heart, the lungs, the spleen, etc. And bicycling is a great form of such preventive healthcare. It helps to relieve depression, frustration, stress, and more. Naturally produced chemicals help to elevate one’s mood. Now we have more evidence showing us this.