mcpherson2006

Your health, fitness, and active lifestyle blog

Making the Most of Your Exercise

exercise

Too much of anything is not always a good thing. The same principle applies to your exercise routines. Taking time to recover, especially from intense workouts, is essential in building your strength. You need to give your tissues and muscles enough time to rest and repair.

1. Keep your exercise routine in perspective. Remind yourself of the reasons why you workout. Consider the potential impact of overtraining to your overall fitness and performance. Are you willing to risk exercise fatigue, injuries, and other effects of overtraining? Think about the big picture and your end-goals. Explore different ways you can enjoy the benefits of a good exercise without sacrificing your post-workout recovery.

2. Hydrate. You need to replace the fluids you lose while exercising. Keeping yourself hydrated can help improve your recovery rate. It also helps you maintain your endurance and strength while working out.

3. Try other physical activities. Cross-training is an excellent alternative if you do not want to let a day go by without exercising. It helps ensure that you workout different muscle groups so you can avoid mental and muscle fatigue.

4. Keep it fun. Working out is not supposed to be a chore or a burdensome responsibility. You have to focus on the fun part instead of pushing yourself way past your limits. Whatever your fitness goals may be, keep in mind that it is much easier to achieve them when you are having fun.

5. Listen to your body. Your body has a good feedback mechanism that can alert you if you are overtraining yourself. Watch out for signs of discomfort, fatigue, muscle or joint pains, injuries, and more. Always keep in mind that giving your body enough time to rest and recover is much better than missing out days of workout while you suffer from injuries and other pains.

6. Get quality rest. No matter how tired or sore you feel, enough rest does the trick in improving how you feel. Avoid excessive workouts just because you want to get maximum results. Stick to your normal routine and stop when you’re done.

7. Eat the right foods. Apart from refueling your energy, you need the essential nutrients that aid your body’s functions to repair muscles and tissues, build strength, and recover from the strenuous workout you had. Focus on getting the right nutrition for your body’s needs.

8. Drink plenty of water. Stay hydrated after working out. Drink plenty of water as it can help boost the recovery process.

Keeping the Blues away with an Active Lifestyle

autumn walk

No person is perpetually happy. Even the happiest person may feel depressed at some point. While depression may affect anyone at any time, prolonged bouts of this condition can negatively affect your life in many ways. Building habits that keep the blues away can be quite helpful in avoiding or dealing with sadness or anxiety before it leads to more serious depression.

Boosting Mood with Exercise

The reason why some patients stay depressed is because they don’t have physical activities, which keep their mind off their negative thoughts. It is possible to have a busy daily schedule, but the activities involved may not provide you with the exercise you need. Exercise helps in making your body release the “feel good” hormones, and help promote body relaxation and tranquility. You can try doing some exercise three times a week for about 30 minutes per session.

• Bicycling – You can try biking in the nearest park. Apart from the exercise it gives, you can also use the time to cultivate some leisure, me-time to enjoy the view along your chosen bicycling routes.

• Dancing – You do not have to be a dancer to do this. You can dance with a very catchy and upbeat music as often as you like.

• Gardening – Studies found that dealing with plants can alleviate negative moods. Seeing your plants grow and bloom can also be very uplifting.

• Yoga – Yoga is found to be very effective in making the muscles relax and for you to feel peaceful. It provides the right mix of physical activity and meditation.

Eating the Right Food

Depression often leads to loss of appetite. Make sure to eat regardless of your mood. Choose foods that are rich in nutrients instead of indulging on sugary comfort foods.

• Cut back on sweets. This habit may include limiting intake of even those considered as healthy sweets like molasses, honey and fruit juices. These may be rich in carbohydrates which could give you instant energy boost, but they also make you feel tired and then depressed later on.

• Choose whole grains. Oats and whole wheat can provide you brain with the essential energy. They can also make your body feel alive and energetic.

• Eat healthy snacks. Snack on spinach, bananas and orange juice. These three power food combination give antioxidants, preventing your brain cells from damage. They are also effective in improving your sleep and help you manage your stress.

• Treat yourself to some dark chocolates. Eat healthy amounts of dark chocolates and walnuts. These foods prevent irritability, anxiety and insomnia, and help your brain receive the essential level of oxygen.