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How physical exercise positively affects mental health

Regular exercise can raise serotonin levels and regulate your mood. Personal trainer Stephen Hitt has seen the impact first hand. #newdaynw
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Even low impact exercises like short walks every day can help lift your spirits and positively affect your mental health.

SEATTLE — We hear a lot about how much physical exercise can positively affect your mental health and boost your mood. When we asked trainer Stephen Hitt, co-founder of Crossfit Industrious, "How have you seen the connection between physical health and mental health?" he said he's seen it first-hand:

"What we see oftentimes is that when people first come into the gym, they're struggling with with some sort of pain point, whatever that may be. 'Whether they're losing some self confidence from a physical appearance standpoint, whether they've got other health issues that are going on, or whether they're just looking to get some positive momentum going on in their lives. There's typically some sort of pain point that leads people into the gym. 

And then, what we see is that after we introduce the catalyst of exercise, and proper nutrition, people start to establish momentum and rhythm in their life. And then over the course of the next three to six weeks, we see a physical adaptation that comes that ultimately boosts morale, self esteem, self confidence, positive outlook. 

That's really the connection that we see between physical and mental health -  that doing work on your physical body ultimately, can be a catalyst for increased happiness and wellness."

The Way Forward: Mental Health and Well Being is sponsored by Premera Blue Cross. Segment Producer Suzie Wiley. Watch New Day Northwest 11 AM weekdays on KING 5 and streaming live on KING5.com. Contact New Day.