The Best of (New Year's) Intentions

The Best of (New Year's) Intentions

I recently read that 95% of New Year's Resolutions are health/wellness related, and 80% of them are abandoned by February 1st.

With this in mind, I thought I'd share a technique rooted in Mindfulness Meditation. I learned it through my yoga practice and it really helps me stay consistent with my exercise routine. 

It's All in Your Head 

As you get ready to go to a class or out for a run, pay attention to your thoughts and feelings.  Often - especially when we're starting out or have been inactive for a long time - we experience feelings of dread and resistance. There's a voice in our heads telling us all the reasons we don't want to go: It's too early. It's too late. It's too cold out. We're too tired, etc., etc. The first step is to really pay attention to the thoughts, feel the feelings, and do it anyway, even if all you can manage is an abbreviated run/session.

Check in With Yourself

Once you're done with your session, or cooling down, take a minute or two to check in and notice how you feel. Don't rush through this and just vaguely say to yourself "I feel better".  It's important to be specific and clear. For example, after a yoga class or a run I might notice that I feel: Full of energy. Lighter. More clear and awake. Calm and relaxed. Accomplished. Happy. Take the time to completely drop into how good you feel.  

Take Note

Repeat this mental 'taking note' procedure every time you exercise and soon you'll notice that you have less resistance to exercising. Over time, you may end up with no resistance, because you've trained your mind to associate exercise with all of those good feelings.

Learning this technique completely changed my relationship to exercise. I hope it helps you.

~ Fiona

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