Going through a divorce is something that no couple expects to experience in the beginning of their marriage. The divorce process – whether through litigation or mediation – often uproots and changes our lives in a lot of different and interesting ways.
Whether your divorce has left you feeling free and confident or you’re having a bit more trouble getting back on your feet, taking care of your health and wellness is the first step to a new beginning. It’s a great time to regain confidence and indulge in some “much-needed” self-care post-divorce.
Let’s go over a few ways you can get yourself feeling your best again after a divorce with exercise.
Start With Walking
If you don’t know where to begin with exercising again, there is no better way to start your journey than walking. Walking is an easy beginner exercise suitable for people across all stages of life, as well as an exercise that offers some immediate benefits.
Not only does this exercise release endorphins, making you feel better in the moment, but walking regularly also has many long-term health benefits that will no doubt leave you feeling more confident. Walking for about 20 minutes daily can reduce your risk of heart disease by 30%.
When going through a divorce, some people can begin to find it hard to feel motivated to get out and be active again. Walks are the perfect solution, as taking walks in your area is a simple and stress-free way to get more sunlight, exercise, and possibly even meet the people living in your neighborhood.
The best part is that it takes nothing except a little bit of your time. And there are no pesky gym memberships or equipment purchases to bother with. As long as you’ve got comfortable shoes to walk in, you’re ready to go.
During your walk, focus on positive and uplifting thoughts and feelings. Try bringing some upbeat or positive music to walk to or try to be mindful and give lots of thought to the beauty of your neighborhood. Another option could be listening to a podcast or audiobook that you enjoy. Doing this can help remind you that the world is a beautiful place even if some things in your life may not be going well.
Go to the Gym
In addition to being a great place to work out, the gym is also a fantastic spot to meet new friends or potential dates who have a common interest in fitness. It’s easy to spark up a conversation with other people who share your goals and may motivate you to be your best.
In addition to just being good company, making friends at the gym can help you stay motivated to continue visiting, and lend a helping hand to stay accountable for your new healthy habits.
You can always join a sports team, sports club, or attend group training for even more opportunities to meet people who are passionate about bettering themselves. The gym is an all-around excellent option for those who have recently gone through a divorce and are looking to get more fit and make connections with new people while they do it.
Be Present During Exercise
Paying attention to your mental well-being and health is just as important as focusing on your physical health after a divorce. There are ways you can combine healing both your mind and body, such as using physical movement to cope and work through emotions.
During exercise, you are forced to be present and experience what you are feeling at the current time as you focus on your moments. This prevents you from dwelling on your past and anxieties without making any meaningful progress.
Certain exercises are better than others for bringing you into the present moment. These exercises encourage you to use all of your focus and energy, giving you no time to worry needlessly.
Yoga is a wonderful form of exercise to cultivate the mind-body connection. The deep stretching that is part of yoga can also do wonders to relieve tension in areas like the shoulders, hips and back.
Some Simple Movements to Get Started
To keep it super simple, here are some exercises you could use to begin or end your day with to get your started with more movement in your daily life.
Arm and Leg Extensions
This simple exercise combines balance and focus to create a full body stretch that requires mindfulness and also feels amazing. Both arm and leg extensions are incredibly beneficial for your body, and only require a few simple steps to learn.
To complete an arm or leg extension, follow these steps:
- Begin on your hands and knees, with your wrists in line with your shoulders and your knees in line with your hips.
- Raise one arm and raise your leg on the same side, at the same time as one another. Hold for a few seconds.
- Repeat for 10 reps on each side of your body.
This single-leg squat exercise is a bit more challenging than arm and leg extensions, requiring more core and leg strength to pull off properly. Don’t be discouraged if it seems too difficult at first. You may also hold onto a nearby wall or railing for extra stability as you work up your strength.
To complete a single-leg squat, follow these steps:
- With both your heel and sole of your foot touching the floor and your other leg not touching the ground, attempt to slowly bring your butt down to your ankle.
- Extend your free leg as you descend.
- Aim to do 8 to 10 reps for each leg.
Because these exercises are so simple and do not require you to leave your home or purchase special equipment, you can complete them as often as needed. Whether you’re traveling, spending time at home, or at work, you can take the time to complete these quick but motivating stretches.
By starting with an approachable exercise like walking after your divorce, you can work your way up to more challenging exercises. Getting your body in shape and taking care of yourself is a great foundation for taking care of your emotional state after your divorce.
As you find yourself working out more, you’ll find that your natural confidence and charisma build up along with your physical strength. Divorces can be stressful and confusing, but you can navigate this new stage of your life more easily with the help of regular physical activity.