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Exercise for Mood and Anxiety: Proven Strategies for Overcoming Depression and Enhancing Well-Being Paperback

ISBN-13: 978-0199791002 ISBN-10: 0199791007 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 248 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA; 1 edition (July 28, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0199791007
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199791002
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.6 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #50,808 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review


"There is no better example of the potential for self-repair and resilience than the power of exercise and no better guide to those in need than this volume by Drs. Otto and Smits. This book should be part of the therapeutic 'prescription' for all who suffer mood, anxiety, and related disorders." - Jerrod F. Rosenbaum, MD, Harvard Medical School


"This is a very useful book for individuals who want to improve their mood through exercise. The authors provide an elegant blueprint to help readers motivate themselves, overcome the obstacles to carrying out the program, and above all, maintain the routine over time." - Aaron T. Beck, MD, University of Pennsylvania


About the Author

Michael W. Otto, Ph.D. is Professor of Psychology at Boston University. He has done extensive research on strategies to improve treatments for anxiety, mood, and substance use disorders.
Jasper A. J. Smits, Ph.D. is Professor of Psychology at the University of Texas at Austin. He has done research on both anxiety disorders and health habits such as smoking, including a current large-scale study on the use of exercise for smoking cessation.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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This book we very well written, highly informative, and a real joy to read.
Shannon Lowery
I would highly recommend this to anyone who struggles with mood/anxiety-related problems or who has had trouble sticking with their exercise goals!
Michelle
The strategies in this book have changed my life and how, when, and even why I exercise.
Mark

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Kristin on July 28, 2011
Format: Paperback
This is a terrific book! I have been trying to get into an exercise routine for years, and the first thing about this book that caught my eye was the promise of learning "how to maintain an exercise program not by applying more effort, but by arranging surrounding environments so that less effort is needed." I had been trying to put in more and more effort, but not getting any actual (consistent) success, so the idea of using less effort sounded perfect for me! Each chapter of this book adds an important piece of building a successful exercise habit, and the material on enjoying exercise, exercising mindfully, and the truth about motivation has revolutionized my experience of exercise and has given me tools to apply to the rest of my life, too. I would heartily recommend this book to anyone who struggles with depression or anxiety, or just the daily ups and downs of life, or anyone who's trying to become healthier and happier in general!
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Format: Paperback
NOTE: I received a free copy of this book to review for the web site Metapsychology Online Reviews; you can read a more complete version of my review on that site.

In this book, psychologists Michael Otto and Jasper Smits present a comprehensive, action-based approach for using exercise as a means to manage mood. In particular, they give much attention to one's motivation for exercise, focusing on the idea that although it will take time to fully address symptoms of depression or anxiety, exercise can provide IMMEDIATE mood benefits. Therefore, the authors strive to help their readers make the actual experience of working out more pleasant. Otto and Smits also address other motivational factors, including preparing for low motivation and directing one's thoughts for success. Later in the book, they talk further about both increasing one's enjoyment during exercise via using mindfulness-based strategies and rewarding oneself after exercise.

Another chapter centers around planning one's exercise routine. Here the authors discuss the benefits and the challenges of exercising at morning, mid-day, and in the evening. In addition, they review some common excuses not to engage in physical activity, including being too stressed, too depressed, or too bored. Otto and Smits also cover the particulars of exactly how to set up an exercise program, including choosing a fitness activity, determining an appropriate level of intensity, and keeping an exercise log. Furthermore, they encourage readers to change up their routines on a regular basis in order to remain interested and engaged in exercise. The final chapter deals with living an overall healthy lifestyle, such as being active in general, eating well, and more.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Mark on July 25, 2011
Format: Paperback
Finally, an all in one resource! I originally got this book to give to patients as a supplement to therapy for depression. I know the authors have written extensively in scientific journals about the efficacy of exercise and also produced treatment manuals for therapists - so it was no surprise to see the thorough review of how effective exercise is, how it works, why it works, and how exactly to design an exercise program. However, I was delighted to discover this book also includes specific state-of-the-art strategies that increase motivation, adherence, and fun in following the exercise programs. In my experience, most exercise programs can work. The problem is getting people (myself included) to actually start and stick with exercise. The strategies in this book have changed my life and how, when, and even why I exercise. This I did not expect. I have never seen such an approach before and I believe it should be applied to all exercise applications!
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Whitney Ladd on July 29, 2011
Format: Paperback
This book is SO what people in the US have been waiting for. It isn't focused on weight, it isn't focused on some quick fix, and it isn't focused on the example of the author. It is based on research, and it offers a clear, manageable prescription for improving one's mood - and the side effects may be weight loss, improved self esteem, and better health. It is so refreshing to read a book that focuses on motivation and immediate health effects vs the tired and complex dance people do when they focus on weight. Bravo Dr. Otto and Smits.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By psalms8318 on February 8, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a great book and exercise really helps me to improve my mood. If depression is a consequence of modern society (lack of exercise and/or sunlight, then it should be treated by what we are lacking, not by what the drug companies would like us to use (your money in their wallet). This is definitely worth a try.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By friend of wally cleaver on January 13, 2012
Format: Paperback
This is a terrific book. These guys really know their stuff and do a good, thorough job of communicating it. This should be a great tool for those with depression and anxiety and, I would think, other mood disorders. The 'Catch-22' of depression and anxiety is that it often seems impossible to 'get moving'. But you'll be encouraged and motivated by this book. I can't recommend it enough!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Michelle on July 25, 2011
Format: Paperback
I found this book to be extremely useful in helping me develop a consistent workout regimen (for both mood and health-related reasons). For me, the most useful section of the book dealt with how you can create motivation for yourself by planning for setbacks in advance, rather than relying on some internal source of willpower to keep you going. I love that very specific strategies (that are feasible to integrate into the everyday person's life) are detailed and all of the strategies in the book cite scientific research. I would highly recommend this to anyone who struggles with mood/anxiety-related problems or who has had trouble sticking with their exercise goals!
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