MENTAL HEALTH AND FITNESS: Building Your FITNESS Toolbox by Michelle Kalinksi
Fitness toolbox? What the heck is that?
Ok, so technically there isn’t really such a thing, but it’s the best way to describe it so let's just go with it. Basically, it’s having an arsenal of different forms of movement and exercise that you can refer back to depending on how your mental health is doing. I personally know how hard it is to do my normal weight training workouts when my mental state is in a downward spiral. On those days, I ask myself if weight training is really what my body AND mind need right now and if it’s not, that’s where my fitness toolbox comes in handy.
Being able to call upon other forms of movement to better accompany your mental state is beneficial in that it takes away the stress and guilt of not being able to workout the way you want to/normally do. Anyone living with or knows someone living with a mental illness knows just how hard getting yourself to take care of your being is.
So why add the unnecessary pressure on yourself? Move your body in a way that better compliments your mental health. That can look like yoga, a walk, bike ride, a hike in the woods, stretching...really anything that you like doing that won’t cause you added stress and for however long you feel at that moment
Make a list of all the types of movement you like to do normally and the ones you do once in a while, but you still enjoy doing them. The next time your mental health isn’t at its best, refer back to this list and see if anything speaks to your current state. Not only will you be doing your body some good, but it will give your mind that boost of serotonin. And any chance you can give your mind some of that in a healthy, stress free way, the better the chance of improvement you give to your mental health.
The WHATEVER I NEED Workout:
CIRCUIT: X3 - Perform each back to back 30-40 sec each depending on how you are feeling today. And, if this isn’t speaking to you, that is OK.
Refer back to that movement list and do what feels right for you :)ALTERNATING SIDE LUNGE
BENT LEG JACKKNIFE
INCLINE PUSH-UP *(W/ PUSH OFF OPTIONAL)