April – A month made for new things

Like most things, we find with the turn of the season, we are rejuvenated. Whether it is the warmer weather, flowers blooming, or just a chance to start something new – we would like the opportunity to focus on practices that will improve our lives.

Did you know that the word “April” is derived from the Latin word aperit, which means to open? Well it is the perfect month to focus your energy on you and open new doors. Here are a few helpful tips to practice this month.

  1. Love yourself – we have all heard the saying…Being happy starts with yourself. Embrace the person you are, know that everyone is imperfect, and take an hour or each week to do things that are for YOU (not just to please your significant other, family, work, etc).
  2. Go for a run or jog – Many people choose to run for health purposes (losing weight, improved cholesterol, bone health, lung capacity, etc). This month, we challenge you to try running for its mental benefits.  As noted by an article on runaddicts.net, mental benefits of running include:
  • Running reduces stress by boosting levels of serotonin in your brain and creating a more positive mood.
  • Self-esteem is improved and goals are achieved through running. Runners realize a greater sense of self-reliance and accomplishment. In other words, running provides an individual with an all-natural, drug free, power-packed ego boost!
  • Running fights depression with the brain’s release of beta endorphins. These are neurotransmitters made in the pituitary gland that can reduce pain, boost the immune system, and bring a greater sense of well-being. These “miracle” compounds have eighty times as much pain-easing effect as morphine.
  • Runners can enjoy a sense of freedom, by forgetting about troubles and feeling the wind in their hair. They can control their own destiny, as they alone make the decision to run as fast and as far as they want!
  • Running sharpens focus and improves mental stamina, by giving circulation a boost and increasing the flow of blood to the brain!
  • Social circles can be widened through running by joining a group or a club of fellow enthusiasts.
  • Lastly, running helps to improve appearance by getting the blood pumping which creates a healthy glow and by reducing the waistline. The bottom line is, when we look better, we feel better!

3. Breathe deep – Oxygen is a vital source of life. You may be surprised to learn that most of us don’t breathe properly — instead, we take shallow breaths and only use 1/3 of our lung capacity.  Try practicing how to breathe when running AND to learn how to take deep breaths when faced with challenging situations. Whether at work or at home, taking a deep breath when feeling angry or overwhelmed will help refocus your body and attention.

Let’s go! We hope you challenge yourself and try these three easy tips throughout the month.

To read our previous healthy tips, click here.

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 Learn about preventing injuries while running.


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