Teddy Roosevelt also was a boxer.
I’m a sucker for a good historical documentary and Ken Burns. The Roosevelt Documentary on PBS is both all rolled up in one. And, I’m watching like it’s a thriller. I can’t wait to see more.
I’m a day or two behind in my viewing, but the first night we learned that Teddy Roosevelt had terrible asthma and his father recommended he get control of his body through regular movement, exercise and what appeared to be gymnastics. We also discover that Teddy suffered from depression and unnamed demons that kept him on the move in an attempt to keep them at bay.
Clearly there were some physiological issues going on that might warrant therapy today, but movement is really helpful for depression. Exercise directly impacts what happens in your brain. It’s not just about effecting mood either. Exercise makes you smarter. The American College of Sports Medicine published a study that showed students who ran remembered a string of numbers more accurately and faster than student who weight lifted or sat quietly. It is aerobic exercise that seems to benefit the brain.
Exercise actually stimulates the growth of new neurons in the brain. In addition to making us smarter, stress, anxiety and depression are all linked to loss of neurons. So when you are feeling out of sorts, take a tip from Teddy Roosevelt and get moving. You’ll increase your neurons. You’ll feel better.