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self-care summer tips
Wellness
Published Saturday Aug 03, 2019 by Jordan McCrary

5 Ways to Make Self-Care Work for You

Beauty
Fitness
Meditation
Strength Training

Self-care is an activity or ritual that rejuvenates us on a mental, physical, or spiritual level. It is absolutely vital to thrive. Yet for so many of us, these healthy behaviors weren’t taught, and we end up learning them later in life. There are certain activities, like meditation and breathwork, that rewire our brains, decrease stress, and make us feel and look younger over time. However, any activity that helps us tap into the now and leave our worries and stressors behind can be deeply restorative, which is why self-care is different for everyone. So, here are a few tips to figure out what form of self-care works best for you.

Set an intention or self-care action plan.

When you write down your goals, it makes you more likely to follow through on them. Intentions are gentle reminders that, through repetition, will reprogram the subconscious mind and turn these activities into habits. Write them down, schedule them in your planner, or share them with a friend (or the internet). Having some outside accountability increases the likelihood of us following through with our intentions.

1
Set an intention or self-care action plan.

When you write down your goals, it makes you more likely to follow through on them. Intentions are gentle reminders that, through repetition, will reprogram the subconscious mind and turn these activities into habits. Write them down, schedule them in your planner, or share them with a friend (or the internet). Having some outside accountability increases the likelihood of us following through with our intentions.

Get moving.

Exercise has so many benefits! It improves the amount of blood flow and oxygen to our muscles so we can be stronger and healthier and raises our self-esteem and confidence. Make sure you prioritize movement. I love HIIT and strength training because it boosts testosterone levels, which are vital for both men and women to be assertive and take action. If you’re looking for some workout classes in your area, download the MINDBODY app. They have over 3,000 businesses that list their schedule, and I’ve scored some amazing last-minute deals!

2
Get moving.

Exercise has so many benefits! It improves the amount of blood flow and oxygen to our muscles so we can be stronger and healthier and raises our self-esteem and confidence. Make sure you prioritize movement. I love HIIT and strength training because it boosts testosterone levels, which are vital for both men and women to be assertive and take action. If you’re looking for some workout classes in your area, download the MINDBODY app. They have over 3,000 businesses that list their schedule, and I’ve scored some amazing last-minute deals!

Incorporate breathwork and meditation. 

Breathing is such a primary function for our survival that we take its power for granted, and overlook how we can use it to regulate our health. When we’re angry, we take short, shallow breaths, but when we are calm and relaxed, we breathe from our diaphragm. When we’re feeling calm and centered, our ability to concentrate, solve problems, and deal with the outside world drastically increases. Try a meditation class. It can be a great way to introduce the practice into your life, especially if you’re unsure how to embark on meditation at home. There are so many meditation classes on the MINDBODY app that can help you.

3
Incorporate breathwork and meditation. 

Breathing is such a primary function for our survival that we take its power for granted, and overlook how we can use it to regulate our health. When we’re angry, we take short, shallow breaths, but when we are calm and relaxed, we breathe from our diaphragm. When we’re feeling calm and centered, our ability to concentrate, solve problems, and deal with the outside world drastically increases. Try a meditation class. It can be a great way to introduce the practice into your life, especially if you’re unsure how to embark on meditation at home. There are so many meditation classes on the MINDBODY app that can help you.

Make yourself a gut-healing meal.

There is no question that food is medicine, and that diet is the easiest way to influence our gut health. The gut is one of the most complex systems in the body consisting of living organisms, immune and nervous system cells, and hormonal glands. When there is an imbalance in our gut, it can trigger a wave of symptoms and health complications. An imbalanced, unhealthy gut can lead to low-grade systemic inflammation, which is one of the key drivers in chronic disease, acne, and hormone imbalance. Limit your intake of processed foods, gluten, sugar, and–in some cases–dairy. Up your intake of gut-healing foods like arugula, lemon, grapefruit, apple cider vinegar, sauerkraut, and miso.

4
Make yourself a gut-healing meal.

There is no question that food is medicine, and that diet is the easiest way to influence our gut health. The gut is one of the most complex systems in the body consisting of living organisms, immune and nervous system cells, and hormonal glands. When there is an imbalance in our gut, it can trigger a wave of symptoms and health complications. An imbalanced, unhealthy gut can lead to low-grade systemic inflammation, which is one of the key drivers in chronic disease, acne, and hormone imbalance. Limit your intake of processed foods, gluten, sugar, and–in some cases–dairy. Up your intake of gut-healing foods like arugula, lemon, grapefruit, apple cider vinegar, sauerkraut, and miso.

Stay ready; don’t get ready.

This principle has honestly changed my life for the better. Every opportunity that you step outside the house is a chance to meet someone that can change your life. So, instead of leaving the house looking like a bloated girl on her period, I make an effort to put on something that makes me feel confident in my skin. I keep up with my manicures, waxing, and skincare by going to the spa and booking the services through the MINDBODY app.

Self-care is all about creating opportunities to show up for yourself every day. Whether that be through 15 minutes of meditation, cooking a nourishing meal, or leaving the house looking your best, it is guaranteed to improve your self-esteem and confidence. It’s so important to make something that you will look forward to. So, set your intentions and then download the MINDBODY app so you can start putting your plan into action. When you look good and feel even better, you’ll never want to go a day without your self-care ritual.

5
Stay ready; don’t get ready.

This principle has honestly changed my life for the better. Every opportunity that you step outside the house is a chance to meet someone that can change your life. So, instead of leaving the house looking like a bloated girl on her period, I make an effort to put on something that makes me feel confident in my skin. I keep up with my manicures, waxing, and skincare by going to the spa and booking the services through the MINDBODY app.

Self-care is all about creating opportunities to show up for yourself every day. Whether that be through 15 minutes of meditation, cooking a nourishing meal, or leaving the house looking your best, it is guaranteed to improve your self-esteem and confidence. It’s so important to make something that you will look forward to. So, set your intentions and then download the MINDBODY app so you can start putting your plan into action. When you look good and feel even better, you’ll never want to go a day without your self-care ritual.

Jordan McCrary MINDBODY
Written by
Jordan McCrary
Lifestyle Blogger
About the author
A lover of all things natural hair, bottomless mimosa brunches, and wellness, Jordan McCrary moved to L.A. to attend UCLA; her dream school. There, she obtained her B.S. in Psychobiology then later her Project Management Professional (PMP) credential. In February 2012, she made the bold decision to cut off all of her processed hair to reveal her natural curl texture. Documenting her quest to find the right hair products, she discovered a newfound desire to be a healthier version of herself. To her surprise, there were many women out there on the same exact journey. Now, she hopes to help women of color embrace their natural selves.
people in upward dog practicing yoga on mats
Fitness
Published Wednesday Jul 28, 2021 by Bree Lewis

Sweat Redemption: 5 Tips for Getting Back Into Your Hot Yoga Practice

Yoga
Fitness
Expert Advice

If you’ve ever taken a hot yoga class, you know it’s always going to be one thing—outrageously hot. Not the “let’s hang by the pool and get that sun-kissed glow” kind of hot either. I’m talking that “I can't believe I have this much sweat in my body” and “I may or may not pass out” kind of hot. It’s nothing to mess around with, and after a year or so of not being able to go, it’s easy to forget just how serious that heat can be.

To get the maximum enjoyment and benefits out of your heated yoga classes, you need to prepare yourself before and take care of yourself afterward. Luckily, I’ve been taking some classes (sweating enough for the both of us) and I’ve listed my five favorite must-dos to help you readjust to your heated classes and get back to the hot yoga summer that we all want.

1. Go at your own pace

Heated classes are difficult in nature. The normal difficulty of regular poses is mixed in with the added challenges of sweating and dealing with the humidity and the heat (at times, I’ve seen the thermostat climb to 108 degrees—yikes!). Depending on what type of yoga class you’re taking (sculpt, Bikram, power vinyasa), the difficulty level and temperature are going to vary. It’s also important to remember that each person in the room is going to practice in a way that’s unique to them. Hours slept, hydration levels, food intake, and different lifestyles are all contributing factors that make our practices different. What you practice on your mat is your own––trust your body and only do what feels right to you.  And remember, it’s okay to take breaks!

2. Hydrate like your life depends on it (honestly, it might)

The rise in temperature mixed in with the humidity that we all know and love creates the perfect recipe for sweating—like A LOT. You go into a heated class dry and come out feeling like you just took a dip in the pool. Before heated classes, I had no idea it was physically possible to sweat that much. If you’re going to a heated class, especially after a long break, it’s easy to forget just how much you might sweat. Is it possible to lose that much water if you haven’t consumed it first? Trust me, going into your heated class super hydrated is going to make a world of difference and help you feel good throughout your practice. And don’t forget to take some sips of H2O while you’re practicing!  

3. Nourish your body

Heated classes are challenging, but I can’t stop going. Nothing quite compares to overcoming the challenge— and experiencing the cleanse my body feels after I’m done. It’s the perfect blend of hard and rewarding, but I couldn’t do it if my body wasn’t properly nourished. On the days I know I have a heated class booked; I like to make sure I am eating right. I make sure to take my vitamins and fuel my body with fruits, vegetables, and my favorite superfood shake. I hold off on food about an hour before my practice, so I feel comfortable. After the class, I like to replenish with a big protein shake (boosted with collagen to aid with muscle recovery and skin elasticity). There is no one-way path for properly nourishing your body but making sure you’re fueled for the challenge of a heated class is essential for getting the most out of your practice and feeling good on and off your mat.

4. Replenish those electrolytes

Increasing and maintaining your water intake on the days you take a heated class is important, but sometimes you need something a little extra. If you’re sweating that much, you’re basically an athlete (at least in my book) and if you’re performing like a rockstar yogi, you need to hydrate like one as well. That means replenishing those lost electrolytes. Reward yourself and your body for the hard work and treat yourself to your favorite drink. I switch off between electrolyte-boosting drinks and coconut water depending on what I’m in the mood for that day. Adding these to my post-practice self-care routine has helped me feel more hydrated after and ready to take on the world again after especially sweaty classes.

5. Bring the right equipment

Usually, a yoga mat is all you need for your practice––but heated classes are a different ballgame. I’ve gone with just a mat, and I’ve slipped all over the place. Let me tell you, there’s nothing worse than having sweat drip all over the place while you’re trying to hold a pose that makes you grip your mat for dear life (never again). Make sure you bring a towel to place over your mat, this will help with support and grip. Bringing a smaller towel is also a good idea. You can use the smaller towel to dry yourself off during water breaks or whenever you’re feeling just a bit too sweaty. This is a small step that makes a world of difference during those super-hot classes.

So, there you have it. Five of my favorite tips (more like lifesavers) that have helped me readjust to those heated classes I love so much. Getting back into it is a challenge for us all, so know you’re not alone. No matter where you’re at in your practice, remember to be kind and gentle to yourself––celebrating your health and your body’s ability to do what you love. We’re all just getting back out there, together.

Ready to jump back into your hot yoga routine? Browse Mindbody to find the perfect class for you

While you’re at it, check out some Intro Offers near you that can help you get back to your cadence of hot yoga classes.

bree lewis headshot
Written by
Bree Lewis
Marketing Content Associate
About the author
Born and raised in a small mountain town just south of Yosemite National Park, Bree is an avid lover of health, wellness, and connecting to the outside world around us. As a Cal Poly English major alumn, she has a knack for books, writing, and all things words. In her free time, she enjoys being outside, drinking craft beers, and keeping life jazzy!