A perfect day to me is sitting in the sunshine, especially if it is around a pool, with a good book. I could do this for hours and if that was a sport, I would have won the gold by now. Unfortunately, our bodies need exercise as much as our brain needs a good book. Since balance is very important in our lives, I'm going to let you in on some ways to get you more motivated and help you achieve this balance as well.
Since I love essential oils, I found some great ways to incorporate them into an exercise routine. Let's start by talking about the pre-workout. The main goal of warming up is to prepare the body by increasing blood flow to the working muscles. Often times, it is overlooked but it shouldn't be. When your muscles are adequately warmed up, they become like elastic and are more flexible. Remember, a good warm up will gradually increase your heart rate, increase circulation and help mentally prepare you for a good workout.
Essential oils during pre-workout can even make it so much more enjoyable. Try sniffing energizing oils like ZAQ's Sweet Orange 100% Pure Essential Oil or ZAQ's Peppermint 100% Pure Essential Oil before your workout in order to give you a boost to get you going. You can also try adding a couple of drops of citrus oils, such as ZAQ's Lemon 100% Pure Essential Oil to your water. Drinking water with a slight bit of flavoring as you exercise will actually keep you more hydrated than drinking plain water. The oils themselves help hydrate you, and the enhanced flavor may help you to drink more.
During your workout, continue to drink your enhanced water and if you add a few drops of ZAQ's Eucalyptus 100% Pure Essential Oil to your wrists and/or chest, the invigorating scent will clear nasal passages and give you a breath of fresh air during the workout. Eucalyptus also boosts the immune response by simply inhaling. It's a win for your work out routine.
Post-workout, essential oils can help as well. If you are suffering from sore muscles (and if you are giving 100%, they most likely are!), rub a couple of drops of Lemongrass Essential Oil to sore areas to help decrease muscle inflammation. Vitacost suggest a wonderful soak after working out with this little gem of a recipe:
Muscle soak: In a bowl, mix 1 cup Epsom salt with 2 drops each black pepper and peppermint. Then, add 3 drops each juniper and lavender. Fill the bathtub with warm water and agitate while adding salt mixture. Soak in bath for 30 minutes.
Remember, exercise is work but comes with some wonderful, healthy benefits. In fact, exercise helps with depression, reduces PMS, reduces stress and anxiety, boosts creativity, strengthens your heart and helps reduce the temptation to grab that cookie off the plate! It just makes sense to add essential oils to help with all of this. The health benefits of essential oils are vast and using them while exercising has so many rewards.
Please feel free to share how you use essential oils during exercise, pre- and post- work out. I would love to hear your ideas!
*Photo credit: Breanne Bitar, instagram-@breannebitar