If you still think of yourself as the kid who shuffled around the track with your friends during gym class, a high energy cardio workout is probably not high on your To-do list. On the other hand, you know how important it is to get the blood pumping when you can. “Move it or lose it,” as they say.

But did you also know that aerobic exercise is equally as good for your mind as it is for your body? For many of our members, the mental magic is the motivating factor that keeps them coming back to Body Machine Fitness. Well that, and the sneaky science we use called “brain entrainment.”

Body Machine Fitness is the only gym in the world that uses neuroscience to hack the brain to crave—not just endure—exercise. We think that’s pretty magical, and you will too.

Closer To a Real ‘High’ Than You Might Think

It’s a common misconception that endorphin hormones produce the “runner’s high” effect experienced after cardio exercise. It’s unlikely that this euphoric state can be attributed to endorphins, according to one Johns Hopkins School of Medicine source, because endorphins don’t cross the blood-brain barrier.


A strong theory is that this euphoria is generated by endocannabinoids, biochemical substances the body naturally produces that are remarkably similar to cannabis and act on the same body system. “Runner’s high” turns out to be a spot-on name for cardio’s mental health perks.

So Powerful It Literally Grows Your Brain


In one University of British Columbia study, researchers found regular aerobic exercise increased the size of the hippocampus, the part of the brain that handles verbal memory and learning. Other studies have shown that people who exercise have more developed prefrontal and medial temporal cortices, which process thinking and memory.


“Even more exciting is the finding that engaging in a program of regular exercise of moderate intensity over six months or a year is associated with an increase in the volume of selected brain regions,” Dr. Scott McGinnis, a neurologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, told the Harvard Medical School health blog. He added that any activity that gets blood pumping has these health benefits.


In May of 2022, the Journal of Sport and Health Science reviewed the immediate effect of high-intensity exercise a molecule called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). BDNF helps repair brain cells and make new brain cells, which is linked to neuroplasticity and neural connectivity. It starts after your very first class and keeps working for you long after your post-workout shower. In this way, cardio is like stretching for your brain, making it more flexible.

Strongest When Repeated

The secret to getting the most out of cardio is consistency–and lucky for BMF members, the keys to consistency are built into every workout. The intentionally designed music and light show that accompanies our HITT sessions stimulates the brain’s pleasure pathways, so staying consistent goes from a challenge to something as natural as breathing.


Breathing during cardio exercise is essentially like doing weight reps for your heart and vascular system, and the more you perform, the more you get out of it. Just getting to an exercise class can sometimes be one of the biggest barriers to developing a fitness routine. BMF’s community-oriented classes are variable and lively because getting to your workout should be a pleasure, not a chore.

Experience The Magic with Us

BMF is a gym like no other you’ve been to before! We invite you to attend your first group fitness classes in Plano or group fitness classes in Ft. Worth absolutely free, so you can see what it means to pair brain science with a full-body workout.