Most of us have fitness goals that we’re chasing. Whether you head to the gym, crush some weights, practice your best downward dog, or hit the trails…congrats! You’re doing it! But you’re not quite done. No matter your goal, what you practice outside the gym is just as important as what you’re doing inside. Use this full-body self-care list to make sure you’re making the most your fitness journey.
1. Fill the tank.
Drink more water! How many times have we heard this one? Well, it’s because water is one of the most important things you can put into your body. It’s required to carry out physiological functions in the body, remove waste, and shuttle nutrients around our bodies, just to name a few. We lose water every day through exercise, breathing, and heading to the bathroom, so you must make sure you’re replenishing your water levels. Drink up!
2. Count more sheep.
Sleep is vital. It can enhance your brain power, help the body maintain proper hormone levels, and improve daily function. According to the Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, when it comes to your fitness goals, sleep supports healthy growth and development. Growth hormone is released during deep sleep, which promotes growth and repair in all age ranges. Make sure you’re getting enough!
3. Get off the wheel.
Run, run, run. Everyone you talk to has an action-packed schedule; there’s not enough time in the day. It’s the way our lives are designed. But rest and quiet are crucial. Taking at least 5 minutes out of your day to pause and meditate can do wonders for your mind, body, and spirit. Don’t know where to start? Try Headspace, a personal mediation guide right in your pocket. Take advantage of a 10-day trial here.
4. Listen to your mother.
It’s easy to account for protein, fat, and carbohydrates—or macronutrients—in our diets. But many of us forget to pay attention to our vitamins & minerals, or micronutrients. So just like your mom pushed you, eat your fruit and veggies. They’re jam-packed with micros. When working together, they’re responsible for hundreds of processes in the body. Make sure to consume a colorful plate of both to ensure you’re getting enough daily. Need a little help? Considering taking a daily multivitamin. Multivitamins act as an insurance policy, making sure your body gets what it needs daily!
5. Find your outlet.
A healthy lifestyle spans much more than your physical health. It also includes the emotional and mental side of the spectrum, so don’t neglect it. Some of us feel comfortable sharing our emotions in a formal setting with a therapist. Others choose to call their sister once a week. Many will confide in close friends. Either way, make sure you take time to recognize your feelings and chat with someone else for insight. Connecting with others is powerful!
If that’s not your style, you can still feed your soul in other ways. Take a walk and reflect on what you see and hear. Journal. Try something new. Go to a museum. Read a book. Challenge yourself with a puzzle. Play a sport. Invest time into your favorite hobby. Let yourself be pleased with new victories! Constantly striving to improve and focusing on your entire well being, not just physical, will be incredibly rewarding for all aspects and relationships in your life.
6. Fill your glass.
If your positivity glass is empty or low, it’s time to start filling it. Why? “We are what we think.” Or at least, that’s what Buddha thought. And according to the Mayo Clinic, a positive mindset can lead to lower stress levels, greater resistance to the common cold, better physical well-being, less depression, and an increased life span—just to name a few things.
As creatures of habit, we have the power to create our own mindset. You can actually learn to turn your negative thoughts into positive ones. It’s a simple process, but certainly takes some practice.
- Start with practicing positive self-talk. Instead of saying “that’s too difficult” or “I can’t,” try “let me try this from a different angle” or “I can try and make it work.”
- Surround yourself with positive people.
- Search for the bright side of any situation.
- Be open to laughter and new adventures.
Your glass will be full (or at least half full) in no time!