Should I meditate before or after my workout? If you have enough time, I recommend you do both.
What Are the Benefits of Meditation?
Meditation has many benefits. Meditation can help lower levels of your stress hormone, cortisol. It can boost your immune system. And, it can help you increase your energy levels.
People who meditate regularly are able to stay calm in difficult situations. They have a better overall sense of well-being. They are mindful about what they eat and often engage in physical activity, too.
What are some of the pros and cons of meditating?
Meditating before or after you exercise can help you achieve your exercise goals quickly.
Meditating is an ancient practice with few cons. Some people feel that meditating doesn’t help them feel calmer. It may instead cause them a lot of stress. This goes hand in hand with not being able to deal with painful emotions that arise when you meditate.
On the other hand, there are many pros to meditation. Some are that it helps you feel less pain. It increases the release of endorphins in your body. It helps enhance your mindfulness, allowing you to be more present.
Meditation helps strengthen the connection between your body and mind. This is great for you if you exercise regularly or plan to begin. Meditating before or after you exercise can help you achieve your exercise goals quickly. Read on to learn how.
What are some benefits of exercising?
There are many benefits to exercising. I’ll share a couple of them with you.
- Exercising improves your physical health, mental health, and overall health and well-being.
- Exercising helps you prevent bone and muscle weakness.
- Exercising increases growth hormone levels in your body.
- For some, a high-intensity workout allows you to relax.
- Exercising can help to reduce your risk of chronic diseases. Examples include heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.
- Exercising can help you maintain a healthy weight.
- A regular workout can help you improve your mood and reduce stress levels.
How do exercise and meditation support each other?
Meditation and exercise are two activities that support each other well. Both positively affect your nervous system. A regular meditation practice allows you to relax and feel calm. Regular workouts allow your body’s metabolism to remain high. Both contribute to you being in a better emotional state.
Besides that, when you combine both, the benefits are more than the sum of each. You release feel-good chemicals, look good, and are more likely to do good.
Which is better, exercise or meditation?
Participating in either is always a good idea. I highly recommend it.
Both meditation and physical exercise are great. When it comes to the question of which is better, there is no definitive answer. It depends on both your needs and your preferences. Participating in either is always a good idea. I highly recommend it.
Some people may find that exercise is a better way to relax and de-stress. Others may prefer to meditate for its calming and centering effects. Honestly, they have many similar and overlapping benefits. I personally love both for different reasons. I imagine this will be the same for you.
Should you meditate before or after your workout?
The answer to this question varies. There are benefits to meditating before your workout. Not to be outdone, they are benefits to meditating after your workout.
Ultimately, I recommend you try both. Practice meditating after exercises to see how it affects you for a while. Then practice meditating before exercise, too. If you are new to meditating, this is an excellent way to know if it is better for you to meditate or exercise first.
I tend to mix and match both. It all depends on the day, the type of meditation, and the type of exercise I intend to do.
Why you should meditate before a workout?
Ultimately, it helps prepare you for the workout. That way, you are focused and can make the most of it. I’ll share six benefits of meditating before you workout.
1. Relaxation for your mind and body.
Meditating prior to working out helps you get into a better emotional state. This allows you to focus and get in touch with your body. This leads to a more successful and enjoyable workout for you.
2. Reduces anxiety and stress.
Meditating before you workout reduces stress and anxiety. Both can interfere with your ability to exercise effectively.
3. You’ll get more stamina.
Meditating before you exercise helps increase your energy levels and stamina. You can use this to push yourself harder during your workout session.
4. You’ll prevent injury.
Meditating before you exercise allows you to relax and stretch your muscles. This reduces the risk of injury during intense exercise.
5. You’ll prepare for faster recovery.
Meditation before strenuous exercise increases blood flow to your muscles. This helps with muscle recovery and stamina, too.
6. You’ll align better with your workout goals.
Meditation before working out allows for aligning your work with your goals. If you know why you are working out, you’ll be less distracted.
How you should meditate before a workout (lifting weights).
Before you workout, add meditation to help you focus and align with your workout goals. I recommend visualization meditation as one of the types of meditation to do. As an added benefit, visualization meditation helps you develop a strong and healthy mind. It is great for stress management, too.
To do a visualization meditation is easy. Let’s say your workout includes lifting weights. After you get into a meditative state,
- See yourself in the gym next to the weights.
- See yourself getting in the proper position to lift weights.
- See yourself lifting weights.
- You can add body movements as if you were lifting weights.
- Then see yourself as if you have achieved your workout goals.
- Notice how you feel.
Many professional athletes use this technique to prepare for a game. It’s an excellent way to prepare your mind and body for your workout session.
Why you should meditate after a workout?
Like meditating before a workout, there are many benefits to meditating after a workout. I’ll share them below.
1. Meditation reduces cortisol levels.
When you workout, your body releases a hormone called cortisol. Cortisol is known as the “stress hormone” because it helps your body deal with physical stress. However, too much cortisol can lead to problems like anxiety and depression. Meditation can help lower levels of cortisol and improve your overall mood.
2. Meditation helps your mind and body recover.
When you workout, you tear your muscles. Meditating after your exercise routine allows you to recover faster. This reduces the risk of injury and inflammation, too.
Also, during intense movements and exertion, you accelerate your heart rate. To reduce it, return your attention back to your breath. Take deep breaths. This is a form of post-work meditation. It is good for lowering stress and it enhances your physical recovery and healing.
3. Meditation helps you build more muscle mass.
Meditation has been shown to help improve muscle mass. A study showed that those who meditated had more muscle mass than those who didn’t. Even after controlling for other factors.
This is likely because meditation helps to reduce stress. Stress is a major factor in preventing muscle growth, especially after a workout.
How you should meditate after a workout (cool-down).
After your workout, meditation is a great way to return your body back to normal. It’s a great way to cool down. You can meditate by practicing mindfulness meditation.
Mindfulness meditation allows you to physically recover from your workout. It is amazing for calming your nervous system. It helps you feel less stressed, which is good for recovering.
Two other great post-workout meditations are body scan and breath-awareness meditations. The body-scan meditation after exercise allows you to become aware of areas of your body that need attention. By directing your attention there, you accelerate recovery and healing. Simply placing your palm on the area, with the intention to heal, will suffice.
On the other hand, breath-awareness meditation is great after high-intensity exercises. It allows you to quickly reduce your heart rate. It allows you to quickly reduce your body temperature. Both of them are important for helping you recover faster.
Conclusion: Should you meditate before or after you exercise?
Both your pre-workout and post-workout meditations are beneficial for different reasons.
This varies depending on if you have enough time or not. If you have enough time, I recommend you meditate both before and after your workout. Both your pre-workout and post-workout meditations are beneficial for different reasons.
Your pre-workout meditation helps you prepare for your workout session. It allows you to get the most out of it, too. That’s why seeing yourself working out, with a visualization meditation, is great.
Intense movements when working out add a lot of stress to your body. If you don’t take time to recover, you can increase inflammation. Your post-workout meditation is important for recovery. It helps you cool-down. It helps you return your body back to normal. It helps you recover faster than not meditating.
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