RAPID CITY, S.D. — Women can spend a lot of time taking care of others in their family and community, all while putting their own needs on the back burner.
It’s hard to be your best or give the best of yourself without making your health a priority.
Oftentimes, women feel overwhelmed with a daily to-do list and think of good health as a luxury or too overwhelming to start.
The good news is that there are simple things that people can do to get and maintain good health.
Michele Plooster advocates women to take an active role in their health and well-being.
Michele Plooster, CNP and owner of Integrated Women’s Health, says, “It’s important that we teach women to develop physical strength, mental confidence and taking care of ourselves so that we can take care of others. I think we all know that sleep is very important. Destressing – stress causes cortisol levels to rise. Getting daily exercise, at least 30 minutes a day. Taking a walk outside, just going out in the hills for 30 minutes, walking in the park.”
The idea of a workout regimen can be stressful in itself, all about finding the right fit for you.
Teresa Parker, Wellness Consultant, says, “It’s all about balance, so strength training, cardio, stretching or yoga, but what some women need is just more meditation and just be still – create space in their body.”
Small changes can be simple to add in your daily routine.
Other attributes of wellness include proper nutrition to fuel the body and boost immunity, and not overlooking the value of proper rest.
Parker says, “The number one complaint of most women is fatigue and not sleeping well, and that affects everything in their body. Usually the number one thing to focus on is actually getting a good night’s sleep.”
As long as your aerobic physical activity is a moderate or vigorous effort, any amount of time counts toward meeting the aerobic guideline, which is 150 minutes of exercise per week.
Not every nutrition and exercise plan is created equal – women should find the best fit for them that serves their needs.
Simple things add up quickly to provide great results, like sitting less, moving more and committing to the change. Put it on your daily calendar so that it’s a reminder, or get into the habit of taking time for yourself each day.
Surround yourself with like-minded people to help support your wellness goals.
Parker says, “Let’s face it, community builds immunity, so if you are surrounding yourself with like-minded women then you are also, you are doing something for yourself that is very productive – we just have to stop feeling guilty about taking care of ourselves, personal care.”
Plooster says if we don’t take care of ourselves, our health fails and we could end up with a chronic condition like diabetes or high blood pressure. She stresses the importance of wellness screenings.
Click here for more on National Women’s Health & Fitness Day.