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How to have a better workout

In the age where technology rules our lives, our workouts can be clouded by… well, the cloud. Over the past year, our co-dependence with technology has changed the landscape for many daily activities. The desire to become more mindful is ever increasing as technology quickly penetrates all aspects of our lives.

Sareena Rama is an ACE Certified Personal Trainer and Group Fitness Instructor who uses her knowledge to empower others to find the joy of movement through accessible, and fun fitness programming.

She has found that mindfulness during exercise can boost confidence, increase results, and create a space for humans to experience joy in their day.

Follow her four steps to stay mindful while exercising!

1. Ditch Your Music

To be mindful during exercise means we are focused on the task at hand, our workout. The intensity of music can drastically shift our mindset, whether it’s Avril Lavigne, Olivia Rodrigo, or Migos singing in your ears… they can become a hinderance on our ability to focus!

It can actually be very therapeutic to work through your emotions while exercising. (In a gym setting, I get it… still keep your headphones on so no one talks to you)

2. Stay Away From Mirrors

Mirrors place an emphasis on how you look, which is a great goal to have. However, this can lead to decreased mindfulness in your workout. My mindfulness coaching philosophy lies within how we FEEL during movement. Using mirrors to check your form is great, but eventually we will phase them out once you feel your body acclimating to movements

Mirrors can distract us from our “why” for movement! Try facing away from the big mirrors at the gym and reflect on how your mindset shifts.

3. Use Your Breath

Anchor each movement to your breath is the key to mindful movement. Try exhaling every time you release a movement and inhaling anytime you initiate one!

Not only does this connect our mind to the muscles working, it can help increase your control from the core. The core (aka everything between the shoulders and hips) is the stabilizer of the body for pretty much every movement. In a squat for example, when we prepare to lower into the movement we take a big inhale (the muscle-lengthening part of an exercise) and we exhale as we shorten the muscles to return to standing.

Your exhale is imperative because as we push air out, our core engagement increases! Increased core engagement, means more stability for the tough part of your movements.

4. Count Your Reps, Ditch the Timer.

This one comes back to the cloud’s distractions. Using a phone timer can almost instantly take our focus from our workout to the iMessage that just popped up.

If your phone is a typical distraction in your workouts, start to count reps instead of using a timer for movements. This will bring your awareness back to how your body is feeling. Counting will help draw the focus into your mind, creating the energy to be mindful in your workout.

Craving more tips like this? Visit Sareena on Instagram!

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