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How Exercise Boosts Your Brain

Exercise Before School if You Can continued...

Can't do mornings? Pick another time and stick with it. A regular time set aside for exercise will make you more likely to follow through on your plan. And you don't have to worry about when you'll fit it in.

When you make it a habit, you can start to see and feel the benefits -- even if you don't love it every single day. It can go from being something you dread to something you look forward to.

Try Studying While You Move

Ask a teacher to let your class get up from their desks. Complicated movement stimulates your brain, so moving around the classroom while you study may help you learn. Even standing up during class can help you pay attention.

If that doesn't fly with your teacher, try some active-learning tricks on your own at home. Jump rope as you repeat vocabulary definitions -- the rhythm and movement can help you remember them later. Or toss a ball with a friend as you study for an exam -- with each toss, ask a question that's likely to be on the test.

Stick With It

Once you've started working out, the next step for success is to believe that you can get better. It might seem like the first few minutes of exercise are the hardest. Some people find that it takes 10 minutes before they stop feeling like they're dragging themselves through it. But you'll hit a "stride," a place where you're feeling good and moving more easily.

You'll probably discover that, as you start moving, you'll want to move more. To keep it up, make it a goal to add just a few more minutes of exercise each week. That way you'll be sure to make it past the beginning -- when it's tough -- and find your stride. Aim to be active for at least 1 hour a day.

And don't forget: To boost your brain power to its max, get 8-10 hours of sleep a night, and start your day with a healthy breakfast.

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Roy Benaroch, MD on January 31, 2016
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