It takes you outside of your head. If you look around you, at the natural setting, or the others in the gym, you see something bigger than you and your individual pain.
It can restore a sense of control. Grief is a mystery; it moves at its own pace and it can be hard to see progress. However, exercise can give you a sense of mastery and confidence.
There are physical benefits. Exercise releases endorphins which can increase your sense of well-being.
It is perfect for the “instrumental” griever. Instrumental grievers are “head-oriented” and don’t want to talk about their feelings. They are more “task-oriented” in their grief process. They want something to do.
It is perfect for the “intuitive” griever. Intuitive grievers are more “heart-oriented.” For them, exercise can provide a way to connect with others and have a sense of community.
A memorial exercise activity has additional benefits. By running or walking in memory of a loved one, you are creating a positive legacy. You are also connecting to the community, which can reduce feelings of isolation so often felt in grief.