Even though it may not be one of the most widely discussed aspects of addiction recovery, exercise is actually an important element of becoming sober. Exercise has a wide range of benefits beyond simple weight loss and people in recovery find that physical activity can be a useful staple in their sober routine.
While group and individual therapy are the central aspects of recovery, healthy eating, exercise and other therapeutic activities can be important supplements to staying sober. Transforming your physical health can be an exciting and positive part of getting rid of an addiction. Being healthy in all parts of your life can help you stay centered and more driven to positive change which is essential in recovery.
Improving Physical Health
One of the reasons exercise can be so beneficial to people in rehab is the fact that many addicts are in a very unhealthy state. People who focus a lot of time and energy on substance abuse usually let their physical health slide.
Addicts often have unhealthy eating habits and rarely exercise. They could have a number of physical health problems that need to be addressed when they enter a recovery program. Developing healthier eating habits and a regular exercise routine can help addicts make their physical well-being more of a priority.
Being in good physical health can help improve mental health as well. Getting the right kind of nutrients and improving physical fitness can boost a person's mood. Exercise makes people feel good and can help relieve stress.
Physical activity is a great way for people to blow off steam and quickly improve their mental state when emotions are running high. Rehab and recovery can be filled with ups and downs and exercise can be a good outlet that yields positive results.
Learning Discipline through Exercise
Exercising and getting in better shape can help people boost their self-esteem. Many addicts struggle with symptoms of depression and low self-esteem but exercise can help them feel more confident about themselves by improving their physical abilities and appearance. For people in rehab, it can be a good idea to choose a type of exercise that has a social element.
Being involved in some kind of exercise club can help you form meaningful bonds with other sober people and ensure you stay committed to a regular routine. An exercise routine that is scheduled at regular times helps encourage people to develop their self-discipline because they are committing to something long-term.
Only exercising when you are in the mood means you could easily give up on it and let things slide. Committing to a routine can improve your sense of self-control and accountability especially if you are exercising with a group.
When addicts first begin exercising they may have to gradually begin getting involved in new activities. Many fitness routines may seem very difficult at first and people need to build up their strength and endurance. As their ability improves, people in recovery will feel better about their progress and the positive changes that they have made in their physical health.
Another positive thing about exercise is that there are a wide range of options to choose from and you can choose something that becomes a passion or a hobby. Activities like yoga, swimming or hiking are all more than just exercise they can improve your quality of life.
Spending time engaging in positive and physically active hobbies can help take your mind off of cravings and keep you committed to your sobriety. Even though exercise may not be the first thing you think of in terms of addiction recovery, it can be an essential part of the journey to sobriety.