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Addiction is a common problem in our society, but getting help isn't so common. If you are recovering from an addiction, you're already ahead of the crowd. But supplementing your treatment can enhance your efforts to stay clean. One of the easiest changes you can make is to develop a personal fitness plan with these simple tips:
Fitness Can Facilitate Your Recovery
Addiction recovery doesn't have to be all about meetings and therapy sessions. While those elements are important, building overall healthy habits can have a big impact on your sobriety. Fitness is one of the most effective complementary therapies to addiction recovery, and it's something you can easily add to your life. When you focus on fitness, you're building a stronger body and taking back control over your life. Since addiction often leaves you feeling out of control, adding fitness to your recovery will provide the sense of stability that you've been lacking.
Exercise Doesn't Have to Be Hard
When you think of working out, you may think of endless hours on the treadmill or in a crowded gym. But exercise can be found in a variety of fun, different forms. You just have to find the right workouts that work for you. If you need something low-key, try getting out in the mornings for a brisk walk. Want to torch some extra pounds? Weight training, whether it's free weights or powerlifting, has been shown to be effective at burning excess weight. You can even get some cardio in with a half hour dance session or by hitting the playground. Think about your lifestyle and what will work for you, and remember to put some thought into your diet to get lasting, healthy results you'll be proud of.
Workouts Can Help With Stress
Stress is all around us, all of the time. While stress is never pleasant, it can be a major trigger for those recovering from addiction. One of the best parts of getting fit is that exercise can help relieve some of the stress in your life. Regular activity supports the production of endorphins, which help you to feel happy and calm. If your treatment, or something else in your life, is stressing you out, try completing a short workout to get back some of your composure. You can keep a yoga mat in your office for lunch break practices, or go for a quick run.
...But You Still Need Other Ways to Decompress
While exercise is a good way to relieve stress, you don't want to overdo it. That's why you need some other stress-relieving tricks in your life. Start a new hobby that calms you down, like coloring or knitting, or think about volunteering for a good cause. If you have some time to spare, visit your local animal shelter and help take pups on walks or give them a bath. Pet therapy is a real thing and has been shown to soothe stress, depression and anxiety.
Good Mental Health Can Improve Wellness Too
In recovery, your focus will be on improving your overall wellness, including your mental health. While fitness is key to strengthening your body, you still need to address any unresolved mental health issues as well. Begin by seeing a mental health professional who specializes in addiction issues. Talk about any feelings of anxiety or depression and address any past traumas that may still be affecting you.
Building Healthy Habits Takes Time...But It's Worth It
You know it will take time to break your addiction, but your life will be better for it. The same is true of physical fitness and health. Making a habit of fitness takes commitment and time, but the health benefits you'll receive are endless. By including fitness in your recovery plans, you're not only building a better body, but also you're building an all around better life.
Admitting you have an addiction is the biggest step in recovery, but staying sober can be just as challenging. Supplementing your recovery is the only way to help yourself succeed. You have to take care of yourself first, and fitness is a wonderful way to do so.
Photo Credit: Pixabay
Article By: Susan Treadway