PTH Blogs Series
02F REST AND RELAXATION
It is just as important that your body receives adequate rest as it is that it be exercised. Relaxation, both mental and physical, is becoming more and more essential in the fast moving world in which we live. Many emotional tensions are reflected in physical tensions.
As with exercise, so with rest--you must plan for it. No one yet has been able to go through life without periods of rest and relaxation. Even your heart, which beats 60 times a minute, has its periods for rest and this period of rest between beats is longer than the actual heart beat itself.
All of the body's functions operate more smoothly if you live an organized, regular life--that is, regular periods of relaxation, regular hours for meals, regular hours for exercise. Much of the tension, worry and fatigue is due to not having a well planned program.
You can consciously reduce muscle tension which is often the cause of headache, backache and other symptoms. You can learn to relax muscle groups. For example:
1. Clench both fists. Notice the pull, the tenseness around your elbow, in your wrists, and even up into the shoulder. This is muscular tension.
2. Open your fist. Immediately the muscles of the hand, forearm, and arm release their contraction, and the tension is gone.
3. Try this with other muscles. Tighten, then relax. An important set of muscles that need relaxing are the muscles of the neck, throat and face. First close the eyes. Shut them as tightly as you can. At the same time, press the lips together and bite hard with the jaws. You can easily feel the tension about the head. Now let go with your jaw and face. Let your head fall to one side and your jaw completely drop. You may need to practice this last exercise before you are the master.
The fatigue produced by regular exercise is the best tranquilizer ever made either by nature or by man. Mental and spiritual fitness, both dependent on a good brain, are greatly enhanced by optimal (the greatest degree possible) physical fitness and regularity of habits. Body, mind and spirit are woven together, and whatever helps or hurts any one of these, affects the other two.
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