We are caregivers. Day in and day out, we use our strength, our minds, and our bodies to help others in the treatment room. But who cares for us? In our profession, we are expected to be endless reservoirs of wellness as we provide quality treatments and alleviate stress from our clients. But how do we recharge? Where does our own energy come from? Some of us become dependent on external stimulants like coffee or energy drinks just to make it through the day. But the truth is, our real, sustainable energy comes from within us through exercise.
We need to take time to reboot between clients, and as our own best tool, we must take good care of our product. To do so, we must improve our fitness, which will revitalize the body, mind, and spirit. But be forewarned— fitness is not a destination but a continuous journey that lasts a lifetime. If you are going to work in the skin care and spa profession, fitness will add years to your career. So, where do you start? With your mind.
THINK ABOUT IT
Come up with a plan. Embrace it. Make time. Select exercise routines and create habits, then perform them at time dosed intervals. You can do this.
Science shows us that well-designed exercise methods have a profound power to maintain the body’s youth and agility on a cellular level. Exercise slows down premature aging, helps prevent injury and disease, reduces stress, controls weight gain, improves circulation, stimulates the lymphatic system, increases oxygen intake, maintains and builds muscle mass, strengthens the heart, and so much more.
You don’t need a gym membership to stay in shape, you just need to move Walking, marching, jogging, or running in place.
The human body was designed to move. It’s programmed within our DNA and hardwired on a cellular level, linking movement as a survival mechanism to reboot all internal systems. Endless scientific data shows how exercise positively affects the body. One of the most important things it does is stimulate the immune system and circulation to reduce inflammation and boost mitochondrial action within the cell. Movement stimulates the release of endorphins, the same feel-good hormones that are released when you eat chocolate. Additionally, exercise has a positive effect on the muscular, digestive, endocrine, lymphatic, respiratory, skeletal, urinary, and nervous systems. Exercise actually helps the body regulate temperature, blood pressure, sugar levels, calcium absorption, and internal fluids.
USE IT OR LOSE IT
A person can lose as much as 3–5 percent of their muscle mass each decade after age 30. Even if you are active, you’ll still have some muscle loss. This condition is called sarcopenia. Without fitness, your body will feel it in the treatment room. Exercise neglect allows for tissues to age prematurely, disease will creep in, and you’ll be tired every day Think of exercise as a communication tool. You’re telling your body to communicate with all its systems, and from nerves to tissues and down to your cellular impulses, you’re conditioning your body to handle outside stressors. In sum, countless chemical reactions, cellular exchanges, and electrical impulses are needed to balance our internal environment, and exercise helps the body induce these processes (e.g., restorative sleep).
SET AN EXAMPLE
As estheticians, we know our skin is a reflection of our health. It’s the same with the body—it is a reflection of our state of physical strength and endurance. There is no cookie-cutter method for maintaining physical health. The important thing is that you just make the time to work on your fitness. It’s all cumulative, so set a few minutes aside before and after each client. Shift your perspective and get moving to save your career. Make a commitment to recharge. Fitness can help you find the energy you need to protect yourself and keep going.
Use a guided workout app for a structured routine.
How to Incorporate Exercise Into Your Workday
Just a few minutes: Quick ways to incorporate exercise into your day
- Take advantage of minutes between clients: 10 minutes + 3 times a day = 30 minutes.
- Equip your treatment room with 2-pound and 5-pound hand weights or resistance bands.
- Walk, march, jog, or run in place while talking on the phone.
- Hold 1-pound to 5-pound hand weights with a selected exercise for an added challenge.
- Listen to music through headphones to rock your moves.
- Tap your feet and fidget while sitting.
- Walk at least 10,000 steps a day; this burns up to 3,500 calories a week (a pound of fat).
- Choose the stairs instead of the elevator.