Balanced Self-Care Is a Powerful Expression of Self-Love
Participating in a balanced self-care program is vital to your overall well-being. Unfortunately, many people neglect one of the most basic elements of self-care: a fitness routine. Taking care of your body through exercise can be an important part of your self-care routine, as well as a powerful expression of self-love.
What is self-care? Our culture throws the term “self-care” around a lot, but most Americans don’t participate in a healthy self-care program. Self-care isn’t the little things you do to make yourself feel good throughout the day, like indulging in an unhealthy snack or binge-watching your favorite TV show. Self-care involves the choices you make on a daily basis that promote your immediate and long-term well-being. The World Self-Medication Industry describes self-care as “lifelong habit and culture.” It includes physical fitness and nutritious eating, getting sufficient sleep, and tending to your medical needs. Self-care promotes your mental health and enhances your self-esteem. It improves your quality of life and your life expectancy. In the grand scheme of things, self-care is one of the ultimate expressions of self-love.
Are you missing a key element? Most Americans are lacking a vital element in self-care, and it’s physical activity. In fact, according to some statistics, a whopping 80 percent of Americans aren’t participating in an adequate fitness program. It’s recommended that adults engage in two and a half hours of moderate aerobic exercise each week and engage in two sessions of strength training each week. Physical inactivity is associated with numerous health conditions, such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, some cancers, stroke, obesity, and certain mental health conditions.
Finding your fitness routine. If you’re missing out on a physical fitness routine, it’s vital to find ways to make exercise a part of your lifestyle. However, it’s important not to overthink your regimen. With simple changes in how you think of exercise and altering how you structure your days, you’ll find you don’t need to think of your workout as work. As Plexus notes, one of the best ways to incorporate fitness into your busy routine is to participate in activities you enjoy with people you enjoy being around. For instance, Mayo Clinic recommends engaging the whole family in fun activities, such as going for a bike ride after supper or playing a game of catch. Take the dog for a walk or plan an active outing such as a hike. Work out with a friend or join a class doing something fun like dancing, yoga, swimming, or kickboxing.
Making time. Setting aside time for a lengthy exercise session isn’t always possible, but by reframing how you think of activities, you can become more fit. When you run errands, park far away and walk. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, and when you take breaks at work, spend them doing something active instead of lounging and eating. When you need to talk with a coworker, walk to that person instead of sending an email. When you’re cleaning, raise your energy level to turn mopping and vacuuming into part of your workout. You’ll find that in no time your exercise plan is just part of your day-to-day lifestyle. Also, remember you are worth this effort. Your fitness needs are a priority, and as some professionals note, you should set boundaries preventing anyone or anything from infringing on your self-care plan, including your workout. Some people find carving time out of their calendar and scheduling workout sessions can make a difference in maintaining a healthy program. Find what works for you and follow through!
Self-care equals self-love. Tending to your self-care is a powerful part of self-love. Balance your lifestyle by incorporating healthy elements, including a fitness program. You are worth it!