Progressive relaxation is an active method of releasing unwanted tension in the body. This technique can be done anywhere and at any time to help release stress and reestablish a sense of calmness. Before beginning or finishing your fusion workout, you can go through a series of progressive relaxation exercises. This method of relaxation is useful when you are feeling anxious and just need to release tension. Perform this simple exercise to restore a sense of well-being:
- In a standing, seated, or lying position, begin by tensing the muscles of the entire body. Make a fist and squeeze it, tense the shoulders, facial muscles, the core, butt, and legs.
- Inhale and hold the tension for 5 to 6 seconds.
- Exhale and release the tension, letting go of any residual tension you are holding.
- Repeat 5 to 10 times. On the last repetition, allow your breathing to ease back to a normal relaxed rhythm.
Meditation is a technique to create mindfulness through awareness of thoughts, responses, and action. Meditation can be done any time of the day and can be as uncomplicated as sitting quietly and observing your thoughts without action or emotional attachment. Learning to clear the mind of distractions makes room for focus, positive thoughts, and intentions to guide you with your fusion workouts. To get started, practice the simple meditation technique outlined here:
- Sit comfortably in an upright and relaxed position. If sitting is uncomfortable, place your back against a wall or lie on your back.
- Set a timer and begin with 5 minutes. As you practice more frequently, you can extend the time to 30 minutes.
- Close your eyes and bring your attention to your inhalation and exhalation.
- Move your awareness to the nostrils. As you breathe, notice the subtle sensation of cool air passing in and the warm air passing out of your nose.
- Without manipulating your breath, simply observe. Maintain your attention to every breath with curiosity, as if each breath were your first. If your mind wanders, simply
The first step in the fusion workout system is to set an intention for your training session. An intention is a commitment to carrying out an action or actions. Intentions require planning and forethought. In approaching each workout session with an intention, you create an opportunity to focus, build confidence and grow physically, mentally, and emotionally.
Commitment is rooted in motivation. Humans are motivated to either seek pleasure or avoid pain. In fitness training this can be thought of in terms of a need for achievement or a fear of failure. People who are motivated by a need for achievement place themselves in challenging situations that create opportunities for growth. On the other hand, people who are motivated by fear of failure may still try hard but choose less challenging tasks as a way to protect themselves. The interesting thing is that everyone experiences a level of fear, the difference lies in the ability to overcome it. This is where mindfulness and setting your intention for your workout are important. As you experience success in your workouts, you gain confidence. As you build confidence, your fears will dissipate.
Confidence is the belief in your ability to meet the demands of a given situation. Through positive experience and accomplishment, you build confidence in your abilities.
Change the way you think and feel about fear. Consider why you want to achieve your desired goals. What is your motivation and what inspires you? Create a vision in your mind of your preferred outcome or use a photo to remind you of why you are persevering. Concentrate on the benefits rather than the work. Take on an optimistic attitude and be kind to yourself. Set realistic expectations and goals to build your confidence. If you attempted an exercise or workout today but could not complete it, you are one step closer to completing it tomorrow. Focus on what you can do rather than on what you cannot. Begin from where you are today. Recognize your achievements and continue to pursue your goals.
As you approach your workouts, set an intention and challenge yourself at a level of intensity that allows success. In each of the exercise, you will find helpful hints on how to focus the mind in a direction of positive action and intention.
Setting an Intention
Everyone will begin their exercise journey from a different starting place; respect that and adjust your workout based on what you need each time you do your fusion workout. Your intention for each workout can change regularly to meet your needs.
Focusing Your Intention
Setting an intention establishes the tone of your workout and directs your mind in the way you want to focus your training. This will help you focus on a specific task or outcome to help you continue to improve and achieve results. The focus of your intention can have a physical, mental, or emotional focus. Change your focus based on your needs.
- Physical focus is a concentration on the physical aspect of the exercises or workout, such doing a few more repetitions of an exercise or gaining upperbody strength. It can be based on a training goal such as increasing flexibility or improving balance. A physical focus can be as simple as improving your alignment during an exercise and executing the exercise to the best of your abilities.
- Mental focus engages the mind in observation and awareness during the exercises and workout. This can include listening to your breath and observing how your body feels when your breathing is shallow instead of deep and purposeful. It can be an internal vision of yourself performing the exercises with proper technique or an awareness of how the mind wandering affects your exercises.
- Emotional focus is paying close attention to the thoughts that float through your mind and learning to direct them and the attachment of emotions in a way that empowers you. For example, allowing yourself to experience your workout without judgment, or letting go of fear of failure during a balancing pose. Focus on a positive outcome and let go of the negative emotion attached to an exercise or workout and replace it with a positive emotion.