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Three simple things to add to your workout to help reduce stress

While reducing stress can be done in several different ways, dedicating time to your fitness and health is definitely a major aspect. Yet, it’s also common to feel stressed about the workout itself. Health and Fitness Expert Heather Wilson Phillips shared a few tips that will help you stress less about your workouts so you can reap the benefits of a healthy lifestyle!

Rather than lifting weights and using machines that you’re not comfortable with, consider a wellness workout. Reaching your exercise goals can still be achieved by doing low-impact workouts, stretching and deep breathing.

LOW IMPACT WORKOUTS

High-impact workouts aren’t for everyone. Whether you’re a beginner exerciser or have joint pain, refraining from a high-impact exercise shouldn’t make you feel insufficient. From water aerobics to Pilates, there are many low impact workouts that you can choose from to align with your lifestyle and interests. A few low impact workouts you can consider are:

  • Golf
  • Rowing
  • Swimming
  • Barre
  • Elliptical
  • Cycling
  • Rowing

Less impact on your joints will help your body relax and is also preferable for anyone that has mobility issues or an injury. However, always check with your doctor first to ensure that doing these activities won’t contribute to any pain!

STRETCHING

There is a long list of benefits to incorporating stretching into your daily life, especially before and after a workout. Not only will stretching help with blood flow and flexibility, but it will also help increase mobility. Before stretching, make sure that your muscles are warm and hold each stretch for a minimum of 30 seconds. These are a few simple stretches that you can practice:

Neck Stretch: A simple neck stretch is to tilt your head to one side while your hand is placed against your head. Gently pull in that direction.

Back Stretch: Use both hands to grab at your elbows and then lean forward. Keep a slight bend in your knees, lower your head and hang there. You should feel this stretch in your hamstrings and lower back when done correctly.

Hip Stretch: Use one leg to step in front of the other and keep one leg behind in a slight lunge. However, your front leg should not go past your toes. You should feel a stretch through your hip flexors.

DEEP BREATHING

Taking time to focus on breathing is a crucial part of reducing stress both in your life and in your workout. Aside from that, deep breathing sends a message to your brain to relax and calm down. If you’re able to, start with just 2 minutes a day to train your mind to focus and redirect your thoughts. Remind yourself that deep breathing can be done whenever you feel like you need it! There’s no harm in setting aside time to calm your mind and body more than once a day.