Exercise can be hard. It can be especially difficult from a time management perspective. You have a hard enough time getting everything done already so how can you exercise? If you have ADHD, however, you need to work exercise into your routine. Exercise can help you focus, learn more and simply feel better. Recently, I have been listening to the audio book for Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain by John J. Ratey, M.D. In the book, Dr. Ratey explains why and how exercise helps the brain in his book. I leave the detailed neuroscience explanations to Dr. Ratey, but some of my key lessons so far are that
- The brain has plasticity which means that the brain is constantly being rewired, and exercise can help improve the wiring.
- Exercise can improve our potential to process information.
- A 2007 study in Germany found that people can learn vocabulary words 20% faster after exercise.
- Exercise can improve attention by increasing important brain chemicals and Dr. Ratey recommends it for anyone with ADHD.
Convinced that exercise can help with your ADHD symptoms? If not, PLEASE go read more about Dr. Ratey’s work and the impact of exercise on our brains. If you are convinced, how will you incorporate exercise into your daily life? As adults we talk a lot about “kids these days” and their lack of exercise. Unfortunately, it isn’t just kids though – we as adults have too much screen time as well. By exercising just 30 minutes per day, 4 days per week, we can make a positive difference in our brains.
Here are some ideas to get you started with your exercise:
- Go for a 30-minute walk – break it into two 15-minute blocks to get started
- Run for one mile – walk for part it if needed!
- Take a yoga class
- Attend a dance class – imagine the focus you could develop taking ballet!
- Check out the martial arts
- Ride a stationery or regular bike
- Play soccer or basketball with the kids
What do you think? How will you work exercise into your routine?