Addiction is exhausting. By the time you get to treatment, you are flat tired. Your body hasn’t existed without drugs and alcohol in many years. Emotionally, you have been on the run for quite some time. Mentally, you’ve been desperately trying to escape your addiction while also trying to escape from the truth of it. Physically, you have been pushing your body to its limit over and over again. Spiritually, you’ve been broken, looking for an answer, barely hanging on. It’s little wonder why sleep, rest, and restoration are important during the residential treatment process. Every part of an individual has to be healed- mind, body, and spirit. Exercise, though it might not sound like it, works on healing every part.
Exercise is clinically proven to reduce the effects of depression and anxiety, help bring focus and clarity, reduce stress, and improve overall health. During treatment, regularly participating in exercise is important and often required. Besides other benefits, exercise helps in the detox process, breaking up stagnant muscles, releasing toxins, exerting energy, and inducing sweat. From head to toe, exercise is a great remedy for addiction. Here are some other reasons why.
- Exercise gives you the energy you need to participate in a full day of treatment programming while simultaneously healing your body.
- Exercise helps your muscles heal, which can become damaged due to no exercise during addiction or exercising on an unhealthy body in addiction. Strength and flexibility are good for the body and the heart.
- Exercise is an opportunity to process your own thoughts after periods of treatment. Outside of group processing, didactic lectures, and alternative therapies, exercise is a time you have to yourself to think.
- Exercise helps you get better sleep, which is essential for early recovery.
- Exercise is a boost for self-esteem. Watching your body heal and progress is an assuring sign that you are growing in recovery and you are capable of change and accomplishing your goals, one day at a time.
- Exercise is a healthy alternative way of producing dopamine, the neurotransmitter that produces pleasure signals, a key component in the process of addiction in the brain.
Regular exercise, diet, and nutrition are part of the well-rounded program at Design For Change. Our clients are learning that there is the freedom to recover, and everyone is capable of recovering.