Looking good and feeling great

It seems a lot of blokes these days spend a lot of time making sure they’re looking good.

The slick haircuts from real-deal barbers, the gym memberships, the expensive jeans – it’s a far cry from the scruffy kiwi bloke of old.

Too often neglected is what’s between the ears – and we're not talking about that excellent haircut. No, what can get forgotten is men’s mental health.

Mental health is a thing. It’s real and men should be paying attention to it in the same way they’re paying attention to their appearance and keeping physically fit.

And get this. Physical fitness is a great start to mental fitness because moving your body can move your mood and improve your thinking ability.

Study after study has found that being active is good for mental health. Plus it’s fun and it can be social which is also another big check for mental wellness.

So remember to exercise your body and your mind.

Men need to get past the point of bottling up emotions. But to talk about things you’ve got to set the scene. That’s another way exercise can help. 

Because exercise doesn’t have to be the loneliness of a long-distance runner, it can be chucking a ball about with mates, a bit of backyard cricket or a game of squash.

Here are a few ideas for creating situations where you can exercise your mental health and make your mind as strong as your body:

  • Join a team. Being a member of a local social sports club is a great way to be physically fit as well as creating an environment where mental fitness can be discussed. You don’t need to be a championship-winning sportsman to enjoy a game of touch once a week. So find a club and sign up – it’s easy.

  • Find some mates and get on a bike. There’s a reason mountain biking is wildly popular in Canterbury. Spend a few hours on the Port Hills on any sunny weekend and you‘ll see groups of roaming cyclists enjoying the best entertainment the city has to offer.
  • Go for a walk. Grab some mates and head off on any of the amazing and totally free walks available in Canterbury. Hagley Park is right there. Or go to the beach. How about the Crater Rim walks? There’s a reason Socrates walked while he talked – it’s good for the brain. You don’t need to be Mr Olympia to enjoy a good stroll with your mates – it’s available to all fitness levels.