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Proper self-care promotes your long-term well-being. Including fitness in your overall plan is a key to health and vitality, but many of us struggle with squeezing it into our days. Here are some tips for incorporating physical activity into your lifestyle for a balanced health regimen.
Self-care for survival. In our busy, on-the-go culture, good self-care is vital to maintaining our physical and mental wellness. The University at Buffalo explains that self-care reduces stress and enhances our health and well-being, establishing a foundation for both short-term and future wellness. Exercise is necessary for your body, mind, and soul, so it's impossible to find equilibrium in your self-care plan and achieve good well-being without it.
For your body. Physical fitness should be part of everyone's self-care plan because it is necessary for the body's health. The physical health benefits abound, helping to control your weight and lowering your risk for several health conditions, such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.
For your mind. As the National Alliance on Mental Illness explains, exercise can improve your energy level, reduce mood swings, and lower stress and anxiety. You can also lower your risk for depression and enjoy better coping skills, finding it easier to navigate struggles that come your way in life.
For your soul. When you are more physically active, your self-esteem improves, and you feel better about who you are. Reaching goals improves confidence and bolsters self-image, and your opinion of your appearance is enhanced as your fitness level improves. It can improve your self-awareness and encourage you to be more introspective as you overcome personal roadblocks and achieve success.
Managing recovery. Exercise offers special benefits to those in addiction recovery programs. When you're overcoming a lifestyle centered around unhealthy choices, engaging in a fitness program can be a key to learning new coping skills. DrugRehab.org explains that the benefits of exercise to recovering addicts are vast, and it doesn't really matter if you opt for a solo routine or class or work out with a buddy.
Regardless of what option you choose, you'll come out a winner.
Finding time. You may have trouble imagining squeezing a workout into your already busy day, but sometimes it's necessary to reframe how you think of exercise. Try spending just 15 minutes of your morning engaging in exercise, or change into some comfortable workout gear right after you get home from work and get busy for a quarter of an hour. It doesn't sound like much, but some experts note that with a consistent, daily session, you can see results. Make use of whatever equipment you can easily access, whether it's workout videos or walking shoes.
Don't be dull. Don't let your workout routine become boring; add variety by taking a class, partnering with a friend, or learning a new skill. You can even revisit an old sport. If you played basketball or swam in your school days, participating again could rekindle old skills and revitalize your enthusiasm. Also think about little things, since small changes can make a big difference. Try taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or parking at the far end of the lot instead of claiming the closest spot you can. And don't overdo your workouts, as it can lead to injury or burnout. Remember to aim for fun with your fitness!
Engaging motivation. Let’s face it, we all recognize that exercise is good for us. However finding the drive to do it and keep doing it can be an issue. Sometimes making notes about your thought process can help identify the barriers to your progress. When you think about exercising, what goes through your mind? Keep a record and reflect on how you can alter your thought pattern toward a more productive and healthier mindset. Notice the obstacles you create that prevent you from staying on track, and find ways to successfully navigate them.
Equilibrium and fitness. With good planning, you can achieve a healthy and balanced self-care routine. It’s vital to your well-being, so recognize your barriers, find time, and engage motivation. You are worth it, and you can do it!
Sheila Olson has been a personal trainer for five years. She believes the best way to achieve physical fitness and good health is to set and tackle small goals. She encourages her clients to stay positive and incorporates mindfulness and practices for reducing negative talk into her sessions. She created FitSheila.com to spread the word about her fitness philosophy.