More and more research is being done on yoga for depression and anxiety. These studies continue to show that yoga can be part of an effective depression management program. The video “The Science Behind Yoga” discusses a variety of benefits yoga practitioners experience.
In a study done by Uebelacker et al. (2017), the authors found that yoga class participants not only reduced depression symposiums but also kept them off at a 3 and 6 month follow up while increasing mastery in social roles.
In my depression management skills group we’ve had a number of discussions about finding healthy ways to cope with depression while working with low levels of motivation. Our group determined that having a few videos to do in the privacy of their home would be a helpful start. Here are a some videos to get you started.
Feel like it’s time to invest in some gear? Ready for a mat? Blocks? A strap or 2? Check out these products and see what might make your practice more comfortable and more enjoyable. Because we both know when it comes down to it these are the 2 things that will actually get you to DO your yoga practice!
Interested in more topics like this? Try these articles from past posts:
Looking to better understand the body and mind connection? Try: Body Mindfulness
Reference: Uebelacker LA, et al. (2017). Adjunctive yoga v. health education for persistent major depression: a randomized controlled trial. Psychol Med.m, Apr 6:1-13. doi: 10.1017/S0033291717000575. [Epub ahead of print]
For many taking a vacation completely disrupts their routines. When planning your workouts around your vacation there are a couple of options. First you can cycle your workouts to lead up to and return from your vacation. This plan allows you to go on vacation and have an off week. Some enjoy just lounging on the beach or poolside, while others include active days touring and sightseeing without a focus on getting enough exercise.
The second option is to plan to workout on your vacation. Although it won’t be the same as your normal routine (may be shorter, different equipment, about exploring the area, etc. Try packing workout bands.) you are still focused on getting active during your vacation. Either way the focus shifts from your regular routine yet stays focused on you as a healthy person.
Good planning makes all the difference in staying committed to yourself and your goals while allowing flexibility and structure to your vacation plans. Good planning also allows you return to your regular routine quickly upon arriving back home. This is a big part of your vacation workout planning.
Many go on vacation and then take weeks to get back into their routine. This derailment is the larger problem, by the time they get back to regular workouts they’ve packed on pounds and lost strength/endurance, both pretty frustrating depleting motivation to get back on track at all.
When you plan for vacation within your workout routine, you can head out with no guilt and enjoy your time knowing you have a plan to return to your exercise practice when you get back. Here’s to happy planning and vacation relaxing.
The number one obstacle people report when struggling to workout is time. As you begin to plan your fitness program pay attention to your time preferences – are you a morning person? Night owl? When do you have commitments you do not want to re-arrange? Then begin to fit your workouts in around those items.
For me, I like mornings better than evening workouts and I’m more likely to get them done. However, to make these happen consistently I need to have a solid bedtime routine to make sure I’m getting enough sleep. Plus, I have children who need to get on a school bus at a set time. Plus, I don’t want to dump the full morning routine on my partner which means my workouts need to fit before or after the morning school routine. I can also decide to workout on my lunch hour or after work if needed. Look at your schedule and see where you can adjust your time to fit in a workout.
Remember you can do your workout in smaller time increments. Sometimes it’s about fitting in more movement and activity throughout the day. Every hour I get up for 10 of the 60mins and do a quick set of something – push-ups, squats, arm curls (I have rubber tubing in my office), shoulder presses, etc. By the end of my work day I’ve performed 8-10 exercises in my strength routine. Since I am doing them in short bursts of activity I don’t worry about changing my clothes. Dressing out and travel are sometimes the things that kill the workout routine. They can take as long as the workout itself. In this case look for options near your location.
Can you find a hiking trail? Bring a bike to ride over your lunch hour or commute to work on? Is there space near your work space to use rubber tubing? If you are serious about making a healthy lifestyle change you need to get serious about your commitment to yourself. Where can you let go of items in your daily routine that aren’t as important to you? That don’t have as high of a priority for you right now? And replace that time with a commitment to your health and wellbeing.
Allow yourself time and space to practice making these changes to your routine. Give yourself at least 3-4 weeks while making a change – that’s how long it takes to create a new habit. When making changes remember it takes time and awareness. Allow yourself the time to study your own process of change and make small shifts toward your goal.
We all know doing things with people we like can be really fun. AND when we have people to be accountable to we often do a better job of getting our goals done. When you set up a workout buddy – someone to check in with, meet at the 6am workout class, or do fun rides with you are more likely to follow through on those plans instead of hit the snooze one more time.
Just for fun … but maybe Chandler isn’t the best workout buddy after all …
It can be as simple as telling a friend or supportive family member about your plans, dreams, and goals. Then asking them the check in with you regularly so you aren’t tempted to skate over the difficult parts or ignore problems.
Plus, when you have someone to share your successes with it helps you deepen your commitment to your goals. Who will you put in your corner to make fitness more fun?
Often ignored yet so important. Standing up allows you to challenge the body in different ways, stretch and strengthen muscles used in sitting, work the core, and burn more calories. Standing up at least once an hour has powerful benefits for the body. When we sit too long the body becomes tight in key places – like the hip flexors. These muscles then pull on the back and create low back pain.
80% of Americans suffer with low back pain. In addition, sitting in chairs creates a supportive system allowing the core to let go. This too creates difficulty because all movement comes from the core of the body. When the core becomes weak movement becomes more difficult and often felt as back pain.
The body is built on balance – front to back, right to left, top to bottom. When one segment becomes weak due to inactivity it causes a cascade effect. Today perform a set of exercises moving from front to back and notice how the opposing muscles actual support each other during the work flow.