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Having a bad day? The average American has 60 per year, study says

Having a bad day? Brace yourself — the average American experiences 60 bad days per year, a new study has revealed.

The survey of 2,000 working Americans examined how we deal with stress, what exactly a “bad day” consists of and what effect it has on our health.

Work was inevitably a big contributor, as the results found the average respondent blames work for four out of the five bad days they experience in a typical month.

The research, commissioned by fitness app Freeletics, looked at the specific reasons given for people recently experiencing a bad day and found not getting enough sleep was the biggest contributing factor to a bad day (67 percent).

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Lack of sleep was the biggest contributing factor for a bad day, said respondents.

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Feeling sick is also a big factor to a bad day, as well as financial worry and work-related stress.

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The mood of our days rests in a gentle balance, as one in four Americans said that not having any hot water in their shower has completely ruined their day on at least one occasion.

Thirty-four percent have had their days ruined by having some plans fall through, and 25 percent said a bad hair day led to a full-fledged bad day.

Sporting heartbreak can even ruin a day, but most Americans are able to quickly shrug off their favorite sports team losing a game, with only eight percent listing it as a contributing factor to a bad day.

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Heartbreak, sports, and even bad hair contributed to Americans’ woes, with 25 percent reporting that the latter has ruined their entire day.

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Stress and bad days are bad for us, both mentally and physically. Fifty percent of Americans reported that they are more likely to indulge in admittedly unhealthy foods after a bad day, and 34 percent are more likely to have an alcoholic drink.

But is that the most effective way to deal with stress? According to the results, a little “workout therapy” will go a longer way in helping with bad days. Survey respondents were split based on their frequency of exercising, with results showing how beneficial working out actually is — both physically and mentally. The frequently with which someone works out correlated with how likely they were to report that exercise helps them deal with stress.

“These findings make a lot of sense, as working out after a tough day can be a very effective stress reliever, especially because it boosts those all-important endorphin levels,” says John-Francis Kennedy, Training Specialist at Freeletics.

Of the people who worked out 2-3 times per week, 46 percent claim it’s a good stress reliever. And for the people who worked out 4-5 times per week, that percentage jumped to an impressive 64 percent.

Of those who exercise, an incredible 95 percent said working out after a bad day makes them feel better. Over half (51 percent) said working out makes them feel more energetic at work. Forty-four percent feel more motivated, and 43 percent feel more clear-headed.

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This is no real surprise, considering the science: “Any form of exercise can help to relieve stress and frustration: it leads to an increased level of some hormones, dopamine, serotonin and endorphins in the body,” Kennedy explains. “These, in turn, contribute to the feeling of happiness and a reduced level of the stress hormone cortisol.”


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