People often neglect their physical health when they are in active addiction. Instead of going for a run or using another healthy medium to clear their mind, they’d rather use drugs. Whether for physical pleasure or to unwind and relax, for most people, their drug of choice satisfies them both physically and mentally. Using a substance offers brief but instant gratification for the body while potentially causing long-term damage that can be fatal, whereas physical fitness and proper nutrition offer a lifetime of physical gratification.
Taking care of yourself physically can provide you with ongoing fulfillment as you’ll start to see improvements in your appearance, an increase in energy level, a decrease in pain level, emotional balance, and much more.
When I was in rehab, I was able to reengage my body in exercise with a personal trainer as well as through group fitness activities. Not only did I start to feel better physically, but my attitude shifted in a positive way, which decreased my desire to self-medicate. Exercise became my healthier emotional outlet.
Physical change does take time. Most people do not reach their physical peak overnight. However, with consistent work toward regaining strength and energy, subtle improvements will begin to appear. By setting exercise goals for yourself you can provide more structure in your daily routine. This can help with increased self-esteem and emotional balance. Through implementing structure and routine and finding an overall healthier you, the chance for relapse decreases because you start thinking more clearly and with purpose.
In addition to physical exercise, therapeutic massage and practicing yoga offer the body a release in muscle tension and a detoxification of internal organs, not to mention relaxation and reflection for the body, mind, and soul.
Healing the body combines the aspects of physical activity as well as proper nutrition. It’s important that recovering addicts pay particularly close attention to what they eat in order to restore any nutritional deficiencies they may have developed during active addiction.
In this fast-paced society, we often lean toward convenience rather than dietetic needs when considering meal options. Building a diet around foods with high nutritional value, including minimally to non-processed foods, can improve everything from your body shape to your mood and even your skin complexion. Look for nutrient-dense foods to incorporate into your diet, as they offer powerful changes for your body, inside and out.
Posted on May 15th, 2013 in Blog