May is Women’s Health Month, and in honor of women everywhere, we’ve put together a list of our top three recommendations for taking care of yourself.
1. Find an Exercise Routine You Enjoy
Exercise is good for your health. (The World Health Organization recommends that adults get 150 minutes, or two and a half hours, of moderate aerobic activity per week.)
But that doesn’t mean that exercise should be a chore. Life’s too short to spend on an exercise routine you don’t like. Plus, you’re more likely to stick to an exercise routine if you actually enjoy it!
If running, biking, or swimming does it for you, great! But if not, try taking a class at your local gym, learning a new type of dance, or even checking out a self-defense class. Or, simply start working out with a buddy - the accountability factor will go a long way towards making your habit permanent, and you’ll get to catch up with a friend while you work out!
Need more workout ideas? Check out this guide from WebMD.
Pregnant? Here are 5 safe fitness activities during pregnancy. As always, check with your doctor if you have questions about what’s right for you.
2. Get Outside
This recommendation goes hand-in-hand with #1.
But if you tend to work out in a gym, or have spent the majority of the Minnesota winter indoors, spring is a great excuse to get back outside and soak up some rays (after applying SPF, of course).
Getting outside has many health benefits, from increasing your vitamin D intake to reducing your stress levels. Whether your idea of getting outside is a quick walk through the neighborhood park or a backpacking trip in one of our national parks, there’s an outdoor activity for everyone.
3. Invest in Your Mental Health
Here at North Clinic, we’re experts in physical health. But we know that mental health is important, too. As clinicians, we see firsthand the way that mental health impacts our patients’ physical health.
Here are our top strategies for taking care of your mental health:
- Cultivate mindfulness. This could be something as simple as taking five or ten minutes to meditate every day. It could mean just letting your thoughts out on paper, to get them out of your head. Many people also find classes like yoga to be great for mindfulness and relaxation. Or, if you’re religious, it could mean blocking out a few minutes for a meditative prayer.
- Laugh more. Laughing has proven scientific benefits, from easing tension to decreasing pain. Plus, it’s just fun. How can you bring more laughter into your life? It could be as simple as sharing a funny story from your day with a friend, or spending time with people who make you laugh. Looking for more structured fun? Try a comedy night, a funny movie, or even laughter yoga.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help. We all struggle with mental health from time to time. Sometimes, there are mental health struggles that are too hard to address on your own. Feel like your thoughts are spiraling in an uncontrolled whirlpool of anxiety? Or can’t shake off the feeling that life has gotten rather gray, every day? Don’t be afraid to reach out for professional help.
How Else Can You Care for Your Health?
Cultivating good habits is one of the best things you can do for your health.
Another important part of the picture? Scheduling regular appointments with your doctor.
In addition to addressing any acute symptoms you’re experiencing, these appointments are also critical for preventive care. Give yourself the gift of self-care this Women’s Health Month. Schedule an appointment today by calling (763) 587-7999.