There are so many reasons we work out in the first place – it may be that you find sweating exhilarating, you have body composition goals or just for your overall wellness.
However, even with these goals in mind, we can easily slip up when trying to be aware of how we feel and how the exercise is strengthening our body. We end up wanting to do the opposite and distract ourselves – listening to music or watching Wendy Williams – from the pain in order to get through our workout.
According to this study, being present is one of the most important things to do while exercising. Stating that, “Those who were successful at maintaining exercise tended to score higher on measures of mindfulness and acceptance, and lower on measures of suppression”.
Some results of being more mindful include:
- A healthier connection to your body: when we’re in tune with our body and the muscles we’re working on, we can increase the result(s) and get more out of each exercise.
- Improved results: focusing on the quality of the workouts over quantity will improve your body’s reception.
- Increased fulfillment: you’re going to feel your best knowing you got the most out of each exercise.
Now, not to say that zoning out to music or catching up on your favorite shows isn’t okay – it’s a great form of meditation but it’s more important to pay attention to your body and it’s needs before hitting the volume on the new Migos.
Not only will you feel better, studies have shown that those who are more mindful and engaged in joyous movement are more likely to stick with consistent exercise.
Here are a few ways to be more mindful when exercising:
- Prior to working out, briefly remind yourself why you’re about to exercise and how good you’re going to feel afterwards.
- Think about how your chosen machine, weight or movement is contributing to your muscle and how it feels.
- Don’t rush through it.
- Remember to breathe.
- At the end of every workout, say a prayer and/or thank your body for the great work it’s done.
So find workouts that, both, you and your body love! You’ll be surprised with how much more you gain (no pun intended).