Last weekend, I had an incredible opportunity to partake in a one-of-a-kind workout at the Riveter in Seattle, a brand new co-working space designed to empower women in work and wellness.

Michelle Cartmel, Health & Nutrition Coach

The ladies from the Riveter invited fitness and motivational guru Natalie Kuhn from LA-based “The Class” to bring this new movement to Seattle for the evening. This 75-minute cathartic movement experience features calisthenics, plyometrics, and guided instruction to mind-blowing music. I attended with about 50 other women of all ages, and together we laughed, we cried, we screamed, we jumped up and down. It was an out-of-body moment and an extreme endorphin rush. It’s no wonder that several A-list celebs are so-called “devotees!”

During the class, I had a lot of time to think about the profound impact that endorphin rushes like this one have always had on my moods. Throughout my life, I’ve found endorphin rushes primarily through exercise. Even when I’m experiencing the worst PMS and hormonal surges, I force myself to seek out an endorphin rush, because I know it will help me to work through my moody blues.

 According to WebMD, when you exercise, your body releases chemicals called endorphins. These endorphins interact with the receptors in your brain that reduce your perception of pain. Endorphins also trigger a positive feeling in the body, similar to that of morphine. For example, the feeling that follows a run or workout is often described as “euphoric.” That feeling, known as a “runner’s high,” can be accompanied by a positive and energizing outlook on life.

I’d like you to take a moment and think about when you had your last endorphin rush: What caused it? How darn good did you feel afterwards? Wouldn’t it be great to have this a few times a week, especially when you’ve been down in the dumps from hormone-related irritations?

The good news about endorphins? You don’t have to run a half marathon to experience them! You can have an endorphin rush from light to moderate exercise, or even from a vigorous hobby that gets you moving. And why not double your pleasure? Maximize your endorphin experience by spending time with other people. Take a walk with a friend or try a workout class with a group of like-minded people.

Can’t exercise because of physical limitations? You can amp up your endorphins in a lot of different ways: laughter (watch a funny comedy!), sex (time with your partner!), eating chocolate (twist my arm!) and even acupuncture, which I’ll be covering more in an upcoming blog post.

Endorphins are a wonderful, all-natural, healthy addiction. Make a point to identify two or three time slots each week where you’re going to develop and/or feed your endorphin addiction and beat the hell out of those moody blues!

Cheers to your health!

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