Last Updated: January 26th, 2019

Your body needs to move and your mind needs to rest. So how do we combine the two? With meditation, of course! Focusing your thoughts through visualization can certainly complement your workout routine so you can fully concentrate on achieving the results you desire in the gym. Try this simple meditation before your next exercise routine to drive your workouts to the next level.

Belly breathing

Meditation is most commonly done in a comfortable sitting position, but for a pre-workout meditation, lying down is best so that you can concentrate on relaxing your entire body from head to toe. Find a quiet place to lie down and rest your arms at your sides with your palms facing up. Now concentrate on your breathing and learn how to “belly” breathe. Most of us breathe too shallowly from the chest; this is a lazy way of breathing and to fully relax you must get more oxygen into your system. You can do this by pushing the air up into your lungs by using your diaphragm. When you take in the air through your nose extend your belly out as far as you can and fill your lungs with air. You should exaggerate this movement. Then when you let your breath out release your belly and push the air out through your nose or mouth. If you find it difficult at first, rest your hand on your chest to ensure it isn’t rising with your breath. Try to concentrate on this breathing technique for a few minutes until you feel relaxed.

Visualization

When you’ve achieved a feeling of calm, use your mind to envision your new body. Think about the body you desire and how it will look and feel. Just imagine your arms, legs, abdomen, and buttocks as toned and firm. Picture yourself in your mind’s eye as that fit and athletic person ready to take on the world. Try visualizing yourself in an attractive new outfit that shows off your firm new body! See yourself living a consistently active lifestyle. Just imagine the activities you will do and see yourself doing them.

Practicing this meditation daily will improve your motivation to work out. It’s a very simple relaxation method that will only take you 5 to 10 minutes each session. Every time you practice this meditation it will become easier to reach a deep state of calm. Don’t worry if distracting thoughts enter your mind, just acknowledge them, let them pass and concentrate again on your breathing or visualizations. It will take time and practice as all things do, but the benefits will make it all worthwhile. Here’s to your health!

by Sharon Bellissimo