Have you ever considered that there are things you can do to relax, while getting healthy at the same time? Many of us view daily relaxation as creating a groove in the couch cushion, stuffing our face, and catching up on the latest episodes of prime time television. However, you’d be surprised by the relaxation you can find in activities that will also improve your health and overall mental well-being. Check out these 3 ways that exercising can help you relax!
1. Use Exercise as an Escape
Sometimes life can be overwhelming. A vacation in a tropical setting can be the perfect option to get away and rid yourself of stress, but unfortunately, a sunny, seaside day off is hardly ever a realistic option. If you need an escape, but can’t actually leave your current situation, exercise is also a good choice – with longer lasting benefits! Here’s how you can use exercising as a way to distract yourself from stressful situations.
Take a Break from Work
When studying or toiling away in the office gets to be too much, take 5 or 10 minutes to step out, get some fresh air and get your blood pumping. Aside from the health benefits of a walk itself, the Vitamin D your body produces from the sun will give your mood a little boost. You’ll also relieve some of the stress that fluorescent lights and computer monitors put on your eyes.
If you can’t go outside, take a walk up and down stairs or just around the building. In addition to ditching the health concerns brought about by too much sitting, taking a break from your work can clear your head enough to make room for the perfect solution to that problem you’ve been worried about.
Having fun in a social setting can be a great way to diffuse stress, as well as a great way to inspire you to make a commitment to fitness. Many cities have organizations that host social sports leagues for baseball, football, basketball, dodgeball, etc. Join a club and relax while getting fit and making some new friends.
Work Through Your Troubles
Exercise can be a great way to physically work through mental issues. Release your anger or anxiousness by taking on more physically strenuous or fast paced activities. Transfer your stress from your fists into a punching bag or through your feet as you pound the pavement running. A good exercise may provide enough distraction and release that you may forget why you were worried in the first place!
2. Use Exercise to Refocus
Just as exercise can be used as a means to escape your thoughts, it can also be a good way to refocus on a more serene way of handling issues. For days that stress has you amped up, choose workouts that will chill you out. Here are a few ways you can use exercise to calm yourself down.
Push your mind into a calmer state by performing relaxing exercises. As you loosen up and mellow out physically by doing slower, lower impact workouts, your mind will soon follow. Jogging, yoga, Pilates, swimming, and other slower, repetitive exercises can all help you refocus your energy on solving a problem in a more levelheaded, rational state. Play soft music while exercising to block outside noises and thoughts from entering your calm environment.
Read also: 8 Powerful Reasons You Should Try Meditation
Use exercise to develop the good breathing habits that will help you get rid of stress, even after you’ve finished working out. Pilates and yoga both emphasize a concentration on breathing techniques to help you re-center yourself and learn to invite tranquility into your life. Light a candle or some incense to add some relaxing aromatherapy to your breathing practices.
3. Use Exercise to Improve Your Other Habits
Concentrating on your physical fitness can offer more than just the immediate calming benefits. Exercise can create lasting effects on other areas of your life and ultimately reduce your stress levels overall. Here are a few other habits that can be affected positively by exercise.
Often times, stress is a direct result of having too many things to do and too little time to do them. Creating an exercise and eating plan can be a good aid for those looking to create a commitment to wellness. By practicing and improving your planning skills when it comes to fitness, you’ll also be improving your planning and time management skills in general. Apply that ability to other areas of your life and watch the stress melt away!
Concentrating on your exercise habits is often the first step in seeing wellness as a bigger picture. Those who are serious about their workouts often begin to shift their eating habits toward healthier alternatives as well. Eating well can remove the stress that unhealthy foods put on your body while helping you feel more confident in your physical appearance. Even taking the time to plan and cook a meal can be relaxing in itself.
Read also: Top 10 Good Mood Foods You Should Be Eating
Working out will help you get better sleep, eliminating a huge factor that stands between you and a stress-free life. Starting your day well rested will leave you more alert, energetic, and capable to handle the stressors life throws at you.
While understanding the ways that physical fitness can bring peace to your life is important, you’ll only start to experience the benefits when you get up, get out, and get going! If you need additional tips on specific exercises or foods that can help you relieve stress, check out the Top Health and Fitness Blogs Award, hosted by eCollegeFinder, a resource for learning about online colleges. The award is a collection of the best fitness blogs from around the web, including a few that focus specifically on exercises you can do to relax! Once you begin incorporating these workouts into your lifestyle, you’ll be surprised by how manageable situations that were once stressful will become!
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