Wednesday, September 16, 2009

100 Healthy Living Tips #6 - Add Easy Deep Breathing Exercises to Your Day

Deep breathing exercises can calm stress, reduce blood pressure, improve asthma and even help you lose weight! What's more deep breathing is free and you can practice it anytime, anyplace. We all breathe, it's true, but most of us don't really inhale to our full lung capacity - we don't slow down and breathe mindfully.

Think about it, when you're stressed out, your breathing tends to become quicker and shallower. Here is a simple, deep breathing exercise to practice whenever you think of it:

Sit or stand in a comfortable position. Draw in your breath and count to six. Breath slowly through your nose, filling your lungs with energy-giving oxygen. Then hold that breath and count to six again - slowly. Next, exhale slowly to the count of eight, through your mouth. Repeat several times.

Exhaling more air than you inhale helps clean out your lungs of any stale air or accumulated toxins. You feel more relaxed and more energetic.

How can you remember to do deep breathing exercises throughout the day?

  • How about using a reminder as your password on some of your computer accounts - like "breathe deep" or "breathejoy" - whatever might help you remember.
  • Remember that vision board? Post a little reminder on it, where it catches your eye several times a day.
  • When you're standing in line at the grocery store, instead of becoming impatient that the line isn't moving faster, simply do your deep breathing exercises!
  • Every time you stop at a red light, do a round of deep breathing.
As deep breathing exercises become more of a habit, whenever you get stressed out, your first thought will be "slow down and take a deep breath!" Over time, you'll see the many benefits of deep breathing in your health, your mental outlook and your energy.

Read more about the benefits of deep breathing.

Recommended reading for deep breathing exercises and weightloss:

Jumpstart Your Metabolism: How To Lose Weight By Changing The Way You Breathe
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