Prioritizing You - Self Care Through Exercise

Prioritizing You - Self Care Through Exercise

By Dr. Catherine English - Co-Founder/President

The world in which we live today is fast paced – we are constantly on the move, we have demands that are placed upon us, and we have obligations to fulfill regarding work, family, and friends. Hence, taking time out for yourself is extremely important and doing some self-care is imperative for your emotional and physical health, confidence, relationships, and life-work balance.  Taking care of yourself is a prerequisite to ensuring a happier and healthier you.  

Conventional Wisdom - Exercise leads to better ‘H’ealth

One of the best ways to take care of YOU is with exercise – all you have to do is an internet search using key words such as ‘self-care’ or ‘exercise benefits’ and a plethora of information and research is bestowed upon your screen connecting exercise with increased physical and mental health.  

Two consequential concepts for effective self-care:

  1. A high degree of self-awareness and being connected to your health and well-being is critical. 
  2. Understanding how the exercise you are engaging in impacts your physical and emotional health is crucial.

What is your level of awareness as it pertains to your relationship with exercise and your physical and mental health?

  • Do you feel engaged, empowered, enthusiastic and energetic before, during and after exercise?
  • Do you feel confident walking into your gym and do you have a plan?
  • Are you aware of how your fitness community impacts your relationship with exercise? - Does your fitness community positively impact your desire to be consistent?
  • Do you feel like you NEED to compete with other people around you to validate your workout...OR, do you feel supported and validated in your personal efforts each workout?
  • Do you have a rationale for why you’re performing certain exercises...OR, are you hoping or guessing that you’re performing the right/best exercises?
  • Do you feel physically and mentally challenged in a positive way...OR, do you feel your workouts are stuck in a rut and that you’ve plateaued?
  • Do you feel pain or atypical discomfort when performing exercises? - Are you concerned about proper form and/or whether you’re executing an exercise safely and efficaciously?
  • Are you aware of social or intrapersonal pressures/triggers surrounding your daily decision to exercise? - Do you recognize what behaviors influence how you approach your health and fitness?

The above are just a few questions that may enlighten your consciousness about your relationship with exercise and your practice of self-care.  

Key Take-Aways:

  • First and foremost, having an awareness of your current health and wellbeing is foundational. 
  • Understanding your mindset, behaviors, triggers, abilities, limitations, and feedback mechanisms are important in affecting positive change. 

Remember, knowing how to care for yourself is just as important as knowing how to care for the other people in your life; taking care of yourself is essential to affecting your health and creating a positive effect in life.  

Take time-out and show yourself some love by honestly examining your answers to the questions above.

And, don't be afraid to ask for help beyond what the Google tells you...because there is no "search" that can answer any of the above questions for YOU.