Progressive Muscle Relaxation: De-Stress Your Weight Loss DietPosted: Mar 04 in Lifestyle by Staff
Stress can be a big, ugly barrier between you and your weight loss goals. Even if you’re fully committed to your weight loss diet in Fayetteville or DeWitt, a stress-filled day may get the better of you, slowing your progress with a negative attitude and the extra calories of bad habits like emotional eating.
You probably have many things in life that stress you out, but there are just as many ways to cope with that stress. To keep anxiety from becoming overwhelming, it helps to learn stress management strategies like progressive muscle relaxation.
What is Progressive Muscle Relaxation?
The concept is simple and anyone can master it. The idea is to slowly move through your body’s muscles from head to toe, tensing and relaxing them to unleash the natural stress-busting powers of your own body. One by one, you will flex each muscle for 20 seconds and relax it for 10 seconds, focusing closely on the tension flowing away from your body each time you relax.
All you’ll need to get started is a calm, quiet place, preferably with a firm chair, mat or mattress. Sit or lie down in a comfortable position and work through your muscles in this order:
- Face. Wrinkle your forehead and hold. Relax, then hold your eyes shut tightly. Relax, then wrinkle your nose and hold. Relax.
- Mouth. Press your tongue against the roof of your mouth and hold. Relax, then grit your teeth and hold your jaw clenched. Relax.
- Neck. Bring your chin down towards your chest and hold, then relax.
- Torso. Hold in a deep breath to flex your chest muscles. Relax, then arch your back and hold. Relax, then tighten your abdominal muscles and hold. Relax.
- Limbs. Flex your biceps and hold. Relax, then hold your hands in tight fists. Relax, then flex your thighs and posterior muscles. Relax, then push down on the ground with your feet to engage your calves. Relax, then point your toes up to the sky. Relax.
Remember: rushing through these steps won’t do you any good. To get the most out of progressive muscle relaxation, you’ll need to spend a good 15 minutes on each portion. Try to make a habit of doing it every day for the most benefit—after about two weeks, you will have mastered the technique and may notice a significant difference in your stress levels.
Progressive muscle relaxation can be even more beneficial if you combine it with other stress management strategies. What other techniques have helped you minimize stress and stick to your weight loss diet in Fayetteville or DeWitt? Tell us in the comments below!