Sometimes I think we take for granted how important rest and properly taking care of our bodies really is. It’s a world of go go go go go go. Even I am bad when it comes to slowing down and smelling the roses so to speak. It took me until a few months after having my son Brodie to fully realize just how important stretching, relaxing and taking time to focus on realigning your body truly is. There are so many ways to do this, whether it’s with a massage, yoga class, reading a good book or any other method you find that works for you. The key is in listening to your body and what it needs. For me, it’s a variety of those scattered throughout when I feel I need it most.
Prior to giving birth to my son, I took exactly 2 yoga classes, that’s it, TWO. It was at a time when I couldn’t understand why people would waste an hour of their time doing something so slow when you could be sweating it out at the gym. It was a point in my life where I thought losing weight was ALL about how much time you spent working out and how little calories you put into your body. But there are so many benefits to a yoga class: improve your flexibility, build muscle strength, increase your blood flow and boost your immunity to name just a few. So go out and give it a try! Unfortunately, my little man outgrew it but we LOVED the Mommy and Me Yoga class at Vega Vitality in Boston or try the 3 Week Yoga Retreat by Beachbody.
I believe this shouldn’t just be for those once a year moments anymore. There are so many types of massage and places that now do membership options. It’s not just for your high end spas anymore. Go ahead and spoil yourself because the benefits of massage go so much deeper than you think. Massages can help with anxiety, headaches, strains and injuries amongst the more common relieves of stress and muscle tension. With places like Exhale Spa Back Bay, where you can buy monthly memberships and receive perks like heated tables, warm towel wraps for your neck and aromatherapy pillows for your eyes.
One of my favorites that I love to hate. I feel like foam rollers only became more popular (for lack of a better word) over the last few years. It’s strange at first but once you figure it out, your muscles will never feel the same again. It gets more detailed than this but the main benefit to note with these is that they work to loosen up your muscles to help them be more effective during your workouts.
If you are like me, you likely have never been to a chiropractor or wait to go until your back, hip, shoulder issues are so bad you have no choice. I got myself in when, after having my son, my hips were so bad that I could barely sit down comfortably / without pain and had to do it awkwardly on my side. The pain and discomfort started WELL before then (obviously) but it took it getting that bad for me to phone a friend for a recommendation. Outside of the obvious benefits: relief of lower back and neck pain, sciatica, headaches, shoulder pain and more.
Give yourself a rest day
I was always one to go, go, go, go. A day off from working out was like torture for me. I couldn’t fathom why anyone would do that to themselves. I think we often forget or don’t realize just how important having a “rest day” truly is for your body. Rest Days are so important to: allow for tissue repair, replenish energy, prevent burnout, decrease your risk for injury and so much more!