While adults should get at least 2.5 hours of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise or one hour and 15 minutes of more intense activity (or a combination of the two) in order to fight America’s obesity epidemic, it’s important to balance your fitness routine with other self-care tactics so you feel healthy in mind, body and spirit.
A big component of self-care is learning how to relax. Studies suggest that approximately a quarter of working Americans have a problem with working outside of normal business hours, so it’s crucial that you schedule time to chill out and stick to it. Creating an appealing relaxation regime can make it more motivating to effortlessly make time for yourself. Here’s what to do.
Adopt A Therapeutic Hobby
Take up a relaxing, stress-reducing hobby (not an additional sport) such as drawing, coloring (adult coloring books are actually a thing), knitting, needlepoint, dancing, gardening, journaling, listening to music (or learning how to play an instrument), cooking, or baking to get your routine. Along with being cathartic activities, they can also boost self-esteem and provide a sense of accomplishment and purpose.
Make Your Bedroom A Place Of Peace
It can be difficult to turn your mind off at the end of a busy, stressful day, but adequate shut-eye is the key to maintaining weight, improving concentration and productivity, decreasing risk of heart disease and stroke, boosting immunity and preventing depression. To help you get to sleep at the end of the night, make a pact not to look at your cell phone and try to avoid the computer a couple of hours before bedtime. Invest in good quality sheets and pillows, make sure the temperature is not too hot or too cold (somewhere between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit is best), get a sound machine to pump out ambient music like crashing waves and install blackout shades.
Create A Meditation Space
Meditation has numerous physical and psychological benefits to include a reduction in chronic pain and stress and improved cognitive function. Make it easier to meditate a few times a week (or daily) for a few minutes by creating a meditation space within your home. The key is to make sure it’s quiet and distraction free. Avoid places that you associate with stressful things such as an office where you typically pay the bills. If you live in a house and not a high-rise, try to choose a spot where you can look out at nature—even your backyard counts.
If you’re in a noisy urban environment, play soothing music during meditation time to drown out the noise if soundproofing the window and/or door isn’t an option. Make sure the space is clutter-free and only contains items you love—photos of loved ones, a favorite art object, etc. You’ll also need something like a cushion to sit on and you have to decide on whether or not you want to incorporate an alter. If you plan on practicing yoga as well, keep your equipment neatly stored away and out of sight. Decor should also be neutral and distraction-free—think earth tones and pastel paint for the walls, natural touches such as wood or greenery/florals and a light on a dimmer switch.
To avoid burnout, it’s not a bad idea to revamp your routine once in a while. Try a different activity, refresh your bedroom, or plan a vacation to a new destination. Once you have more energy from other outlets, it can be easier to achieve your fitness goals.
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