We’ve all heard the saying, “It’s about the journey, not the destination.” Well, the same is true for your workouts. It’s not just about the workout because what you do before and after are just as important as the 45 minutes or hour that you spend at The Dailey Method studio. While we gain so many physical benefits during class, the mind-body benefits actually happen outside of the studio! So, below I have created a few pre and post workout tips that will help you both in and out of class.
A healthy body is a hydrated body so be sure to come to class hydrated. This is where you’ll be able to practice at your optimal level and get the most from the work we do, both strengthening and stretching. I try to begin each day with a full glass of water that I leave next to my bed the night prior. This gets me off on the right foot so I am not constantly trying to keep up throughout the day. Also, while you can probably go a whole class without any water, fill up a cup and have it near you. If it is there, you are more likely to drink it!
2. Come to class with an intention.
Some days my intention is to get the most I can from seat work, other days, my intention is on stretching because I am sore from a previous class and other days, I just want to focus deeply on listening to my body and practicing my alignment. Coming to class with intention allows you to be more mindful in class. I certainly work harder in seat work when that is my focus and soften further into the stretches on the days where that is what my body needs.
3. Leave everything outside the studio.
This includes cell phones, to-do lists or that disagreement you just had with your child. Allow your time in the studio to be about you and your body. When the outside world starts creeping in, bring your awareness back to your breath and focus on the cues your teacher is giving so you can come back to the present moment. This is your gift to yourself, so get the most out of it you can!
1. Don’t skip the stretch – or do it at home if you do need to run out early!
Don’t skip the stretching because you’re short on time. I know we all have very busy lives so if you do need to leave class early, be sure to stretch at home. It helps prevent soreness, but long healthy muscles are also less prone to injury. If you do need to stretch at home, give yourself a hamstring stretch, a spinal rotation (either seated or lying) and a chest opening stretch – I like bow pose because you get a spinal extension stretch as well!
2. Find a healthy post workout meal or snack.
My go to is a green juice because I generally workout in the morning but if you take a lunch time or evening class, follow it with a nice big salad or a healthy dinner. You nourish your body in class so continue that nourishment with a delicious and healthful meal afterwards.
3. Try to bring the stillness you found at the end of class with you into your day.
One of the reasons we love to end class in savasana is because it allows your body a moment to absorb all the benefits of the hard work you’ve just done. It also gives you a moment to find stillness in the mind. When leaving class, try to take this sense of stillness of mind and body with you. You may start to notice that it helps you react better to stressful situations or make more sound decisions. But regardless, it will allow you to find a few more moments of calm before you enter the storm of work or your daily life!
I hope these tips help you get even more from your Dailey Method workout.