How Adding Self-Care to Your Fitness Routine Can Make You Healthier

This guess post comes to us from Sheila Olson of

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Fitness doesn't end when your workout routine is over for the day. If you want to truly become fit, improve your health, and start feeling better, you've got to add self-care to your daily schedule. Creating a well-balanced routine will improve your physical, mental, and emotional health and give your body everything it wants.

Creating a Routine

It takes about three months to really establish a physical fitness routine, according to PsychCentral. In that time, one of the biggest challenges people face is getting to the gym. One solution is to create your own miniature gym at home. Having a spare room, basement, or garage dedicated to your health and wellness can make you more likely to prioritize your new routine. Angie’s List advises investing in the right materials, from flooring and lighting to shelving and equipment, so your gym space is both safe and fun to use.

Another common challenge is burnout from doing the same activities over and over again. The key is to design a well-balanced workout plan for yourself that you enjoy doing, and vary the exercises and movements so you don't become bored. Add some fun activities into your physical fitness plan, something that will satisfy your emotional needs as well as physical ones. Gardening, dancing, walking, and swimming are all great exercises that get your heart pumping and your muscles working, and they satisfy your mind's need for fun as well.

When Too Much is Too Much

Physical fitness is important, and doctors all over the world recommend regular activity as a way to stay healthy, lose weight, and feel better overall. But you can have too much of a good thing. If you overtrain, you increase your chances of injuring yourself. Make sure you're stretching your muscles, hydrating your body while you work out, and wearing proper shoes and clothing.

Many gyms are now integrating self-care into their scheduled workouts, giving people time to properly warm up before exercising and cool down after it's over, according to Shape magazine. Take this time for yourself before and after every workout, and don't push yourself past your own limits. Caring for yourself is about listening to your body, and being aware of its needs.

Press Pause

Today's world is pretty fast-paced, and making time to work out regularly is already hard enough. It can be difficult to add fitness to your daily list of stuff to do. So once you've completed your exercise routine for the day, you've already done a lot to improve your overall health. Don't you deserve a reward for all that hard work?

Care for yourself the right way, and give yourself a break every day. Take at least 5 minutes to do absolutely nothing other than meditate, breathe, and de-stress. You'll be surprised by how big a difference a little break can make, and how much your overall stress level is reduced. Just press the pause button on your busy schedule every day, and give yourself a well-earned break. This will go a long way toward your overall self-care plan.

Leading a Well-Balanced Life

Manage the stress in your life with self-care. You'll end up having healthier relationships with others and a healthier relationship with your own body. Don't neglect your own needs, and make taking care of yourself a priority every day. Take time to relax, get plenty of sleep, and balance your exercise routine with physical activity that you enjoy. Focus on yourself every day, and you will notice a big difference in how you feel physically, mentally and emotionally.

Photo credit:

Rebecca Delman