How to ensure you are really taking care of yourself while you are getting into shape

January 14, 2019
Blog
Posted in
La Causa

How to Ensure You're Really Taking Care of Yourself While You're Getting in Shape

Whether you’re bulking up, slimming down, or just adding some activity to your life, fitness is an important part of overall good health. People who exercise are happier and typically live longer than those who do not. Like anything, however, there has to be a balance when it comes to your fitness routine. You must be able to focus on self-care before, during, and after your daily workouts. This will help you prevent overtraining, burnout, and injury.  

Don’t Skip Your Recovery Time 

Both your body and your mind need a break after exercise. You may think that stacking workouts back-to-back helps you get ahead in your fitness regimen, but, in fact, it does the opposite. You need your recovery time.  

Rest is good, but it may help to supercharge your rest with a little pampering between your daily workouts. An at-home spa day, for instance, is a great way to rest your body between bouts of working it out. What does this include? Perhaps a hot rock massage, some soothing music, and a nice cup of tea? You can get even fancier with skincare treatments and facial masks.

 Make Good Nutrition a Priority 

If you’re concerned with health and fitness, you’ve probably heard that good health begins in the kitchen. It’s true -- both your physical and mental well-being are directly and profoundly affected by the foods you use as fuel. A balanced diet with plenty of lean protein and vegetables can give you the energy you need to get the most from your physical workout. For your mental health, pay attention to your microbiome. The right types of food and supplements can help the good bacteria in your stomach stay regulated, reducing stress and improving your mood.

 Add Some Mindfulness to Your Regimen 

One way to truly combine self-care and fitness is to work some mindfulness into your daily regimen. Mindfulness, often closely linked with meditation, is a brain-calming act that involves being in the present. This will help prevent burn out. As Mayo Clinic says, “planning, problem-solving, daydreaming, or thinking negative or random thoughts can be draining. It can also make you more likely to experience stress, anxiety and symptoms of depression.” Meditation, deep breathing, and yoga can help you negate these negative effects.  

Set Aside Time to Truly Devote Yourself to Healthy Exercise 

Healthy exercise is not rushed. It’s not done on the fly, with stressful time considerations. The way you keep your body from wearing out when you’re executing a daily fitness regimen is through proper warming up, cooling down, and hydration. Your schedule should give yourself enough time so that you can properly work out. Skipping these crucial steps can lead to injury but will certainly lead to less-effective, less-enjoyable exercise.  

Find Ways to Be Social with Your Exercise 

Most people underestimate just how much being social can positively affect their daily lives. Sometimes, when people shift their focus to getting fit, they block out everything else around them and insulate themselves from their social life. You should try to make your exercise a social event at least once a week. Go on a run with a friend, play a team sport with a few friends, or simply head out to a group fitness class every once in a while. Working out with people has plenty of benefits, including increased motivation and intensity/effectiveness.

 Don’t Sacrifice Your Sleep

 You have a busy life, so you probably have to squeeze your workouts in when you can. Between work, kids, and other daily obligations, you sometimes have to get your workout in super late or super early. While this is fine on occasion, making a habit of sacrificing sleep in order to exercise more is counterproductive. Without sleep, your body doesn’t have as much time to recover. This makes your workouts less efficient. Plus, lack of sleep will make you unhealthy and unhappy on the whole — physically and mentally. Try squeezing your workout in during your lunch break or before you pick up the kids from school instead.

 All your exercise gains won’t matter much if you run yourself ragged making them. Any true fitness plan must jive with your overall self-care routine. This means stretching, warming up, cooling down, resting, recovering, sleeping, socializing, meditating, and everything else your body and mind need to be truly healthy and happy.

 

Article by Ashley Taylor

Photo by Nathan McBride on Unsplash