When people start on the path toward addiction recovery, they have a tough road ahead of them. The good news is that they can focus on improving their overall health and well-being by shifting their attention to fitness and nutrition and creating healthy habits to replace the unhealthy habits that contributed to their addiction initially. The role of exercise and nutrition in addiction recovery is vital to staying sober, and we share three fitness and healthy eating tips to keep recovering addicts on track.
1. Create a Routine that Includes Daily Exercise
Recovering addicts are much more successful when they have a routine that helps them know what to do and when, especially early in recovery. By creating a daily routine that includes exercise, addicts can positively rebuild their lives and schedule healthy activities. Daily exercise relieves stress and anxiety and improves mood and attitude, which helps the person in recovery avoid a relapse.
Exercise is a concrete activity that can be measured by miles or minutes and yields measurable results, which helps recovering addicts track their progress and realize how their healthy actions benefit their lives. Some suggestions for creating a routine of exercise include setting aside 30 minutes each morning for a walk or a run, taking an exercise class a few nights a week, hitting the weight room two or three afternoons a week, and doing Yoga each night to relieve stress.
If you are the type of person who likes to mix up the routine every once and again, try swimming. Getting in the pool is a great way to work out without feeling like you’re working out, too. People enjoy swimming laps to exercise and relieve stress.
Committing to a routine that includes daily exercise also helps recovering addicts take care of themselves and shows them that their health is a priority. They can track progress and goals and build their self-esteem and confidence while committing to their health.
2. Replace Junk Food with Fresh, Natural Foods
One way to get started with healthy eating is to rid your home of junk food and replace it with fresh, natural foods. Get rid of potato chips, cookies, ice cream, and other junk food and
replace it with baked snacks, fresh fruit, and crunchy vegetables. Place a bowl of apples or oranges on your kitchen counter or table so you will reach for the healthy food that is easy to access rather than searching for unhealthy food you may have stashed in a pantry.
If you begin by cutting down on sugary, fatty, and processed foods, you will help relieve your cravings and take control of your eating habits more easily. The better your nutrition, the better your chances of boosting your energy and physical and mental health and giving yourself a better chance of avoiding a relapse.
3. Enlist the Help of a Workout Buddy
An essential part of addiction recovery is a support system, so expand your support system to include a workout buddy. A recent study found that working out with a partner improves weight loss and helps people stay accountable for their health and fitness. You will have a much better chance of developing healthy habits and sticking to a fitness routine if you know that you have a partner waiting for you to show up to the gym or hiking trail.
When choosing a workout buddy, opt for someone who is responsible and accountable. You need to know that you can count on this person to show up at designated times and help you stick to your daily exercise routine. You also need to know that this person will be there for you when you struggle or want to quit and will help you avoid a relapse.
Recovering addicts can improve their overall health and well-being by creating routine that includes daily exercise, replacing junk food with fresh, natural foods, and enlisting the help of a workout buddy.
This article was submitted by Jackie Cortez of the The Prevention Coalition.org