Can Exercise Help with Burnout?

Burnout is something nobody wants to experience, but it happens nonetheless. In today’s fast-paced, stressful world, burnout often happens to people who do not know how to handle it. They wonder if there is a way to feel better and look to exercise since exercise is a healthy activity that helps overcome many things.

Exercise can help with burnout. Exercise helps boost your moods, keeps the body physically fit, and is known to clear toxins from the body, which in turn will help you feel elevated. Additionally, exercise helps you deal with feelings of anxiety and depression, common symptoms of burnout.

Exercise can be utilized to help with burnout. It is an important tool that can be practiced anywhere at any time. Read on to discover how burnout affects you, how exercise helps with burnout, and how you can implement exercise now to feel better soon.

Can Exercise Help with Burnout?

When experiencing burnout, the last thing you may want to do is exercise. The idea of having to get up and move may seem daunting. It may seem like exercise would exhaust you even more. 

However, this is not the case. Exercise is one of the best things you can do for your mental well-being, and it will inevitably help with your burnout. 

So, how does exercise help with burnout? Exercise helps flush toxins from the body. When you exercise, your heart rate goes up. When your heart rate goes up, blood is pumped quickly through the body, and when your blood is pumping like this, it flushes toxins out of your body. 

Exercise has several benefits that directly correlate with curing burnout. Some of them include:

  • Increased motivation
  • Less anxiety
  • Elevated mood
  • The ability to flush toxins from the body
  • Diminished negative feelings, such as anger

There have been studies that show that exercise helps decrease the likelihood of depression. These studies have also shown that exercise can help decrease feelings of depression. 

The Signs You May Have Burnout

How do you know if you have burnout? Studies show that roughly four to seven percent of adults have burnout. This is a significant amount. It is possible you may have burnout but not realize it. 

Burnout is an extreme form of stress usually brought about through work. Some of the signs of burnout include:

  • Forgetfulness
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Increased irritability
  • Increased anxiety
  • Physical ailments, such as muscle tension, fatigue, and pain
  • Detachment 
  • Loss of appetite
  • Difficulty concentrating 

Oftentimes, people think that what they are feeling is just a bad mood that will go away. They may also think it is nothing to worry about. However, burnout is a real issue that can put a halt to your productivity and your well-being. Recognizing the signs of burnout can help you start a plan quickly to stop it. 

Burnout is a Gradual Affliction

One of the factors that make it difficult to recognize if you have burnout is that it gradually gets worse. 

For example, in the beginning, you will most likely only have minor symptoms. However, these symptoms will get worse over time. By the time they are extreme, you will have become “used” to them and not realize how bad it has become. 

Burnout is extreme and chronic and can completely debilitate your ability to work and function on a day-to-day basis. Recognizing burnout early on will help you overcome it quickly. 

Exercising Outdoors Helps with Burnout

Any form of exercise will benefit a person experiencing burnout. If you exercise predominantly indoors, that is okay. The idea is to keep your body moving. If you cannot get outside, do not worry. 

However, exercising outdoors has been shown to have a profound effect on those with burnout. 

Exercising outdoors has been shown in studies to have greater benefits than exercising indoors. Some of these benefits include:

  • A substantial feeling of rejuvenation. Feeling unmotivated and depressed are common symptoms of burnout. When you feel rejuvenated after a workout, you are mitigating these symptoms. You will feel better and more motivated to do the things you love doing.
  • Increased energy. When people experience burnout, they find they have a lack of energy, which makes it nearly impossible to complete necessary tasks throughout the day. With increased energy, you will be better equipped to be productive each day.
  • Reduced physical ailments, such as tension and fatigue. Physical ailments can halt your life. They are constant, annoying, and uncomfortable. By alleviating these symptoms, you are improving your quality of life. 

Additionally, other studies have shown that people who exercise outdoors are more likely to repeat their exercise than if they were exercising indoors. 

Fresh air and changing sceneries can help keep one motivated and engaged in the exercise that they are doing. Being consistent will help with the overall effectiveness of exercising to help your burnout.

Pair Exercise with a Balanced Diet

Exercise is a great tool to combat burnout. However, it will work most efficiently when it is paired with a balanced diet. 

A balanced diet with high nutritional content will help elevate the body’s response to burnout. 

The best foods for helping fight against burnout are foods high in omega-3 and fatty acids. Fatty Acids have been said to be a natural antidepressant, and they are also good for your heart. Some foods to consider that are high in omega-3 fatty acids include:

  • Fish
  • Flaxseed oil
  • Walnuts

Having a healthier diet will help you feel better. It will prepare your body for the exercises you plan on doing. Healthy foods are fuel for the body to exercise. You do not want to exercise while also maintaining a poor diet.

A poor diet is known to make you feel sluggish and unmotivated. The last thing you want are these feelings on top of the feelings you likely already have resulting from your burnout. 

Implementing Exercise When Experiencing Burnout

If you suspect you are experiencing burnout, you should implement exercise into your routine to combat it. However, many folks may not know how to do this, especially when they are feeling stressed, exhausted, or depressed.

When you are trying to overcome burnout, it is important to take stock of the symptoms. You should write these down. It makes it easier to combat when you know precisely what you want to change. 

Implementing exercise into your routine may seem daunting, but if you do it right, it does not have to be. Here are five ways to implement exercise into your routine to overcome burnout:

  • Rest. You need to take time off. Rest is an important factor in overcoming burnout. Rest will help you think clearly because it is eliminating whatever your stressor is. You do not want to injure yourself. 
  • Be consistent. Exercising once in a while will not work. You need to remain consistent with your exercises. Create a schedule and stick to it. This will keep you motivated, but it will also sustain the benefits you get from the workouts.
  • Have a variety of exercises. Variety helps keep you engaged. If you have a variety of workouts, you will not fall victim to monotony. By utilizing different workouts, you will stay motivated and more likely to continue on your journey.
  • Pair with a balanced diet. As mentioned before, pairing your exercises with a balanced diet is crucial to overcoming burnout.
  • Journal your progress. Journaling your progress is a great way to stay motivated. It is also a great way to see how far you have come. It will show you in black and white how it is helping you. 

You should also make a note of the stressors once you identify them. It works the same as when you take note of your symptoms. You have to become cognizant of the source to best overcome it. 


Exercise is a great way to help with burnout. Whether you are experiencing all the symptoms of burnout or only a few, working out consistently is quite beneficial.

Exercise will provide you with a mood boost, a motivation boost, and many health benefits that will serve you well even after you overcome burnout. 

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