What you can do

Find an activity that is enjoyable

If you don’t know what you might enjoy, try a few different things.

Build more physical activity into your life

You don’t have to start suddenly, add more physical activity into your life gradually in small steps.

Exercise regularly

You should do about 30 minutes of moderate physical exercise on at least five days a week. This can be done in one 30-minute session or broken up into shorter 10 to 15-minute sessions. Moderate exercise means you're working hard enough to raise your heart rate and break a sweat, but you can still talk.

Exercise with a friend

A friend can help you stay motivated. Consider joining a gym or trying out dance classes.

How exercise affects how we feel

  • Exercise seems to have an effect on certain chemicals in the brain, like dopamine and serotonin. Brain cells use these chemicals to communicate with each other, which means exercise can improve our concentration and focus.
  • Exercise reduces muscle tension and general stress, and stimulates the release of endorphins and epinephrine, which can improve mood.
  • Exercise gives you a sense of control over your life – that you have choices you can make. The sense that you are looking after yourself can also feel good.
  • Exercise improves sleep because it acts as a physical stressor to the body. The brain compensates for this stress by increasing deep sleep, which is why people tend to sleep soundly after a healthy workout.

Online support and apps that help