exercise-to-control-drinking-199x300At first glance you would probably ask what fitness has to do with drinking, but once you think about WHY you drink and then think about what your reasons are NOT to drink, it starts to make more sense.

The three things that I try to get people to focus on with the MODER8 plan are:

  1. Creating Goals and Action Items – something to be working toward and to be enthusiastic about to give positive reasons NOT to drink.
  2. Identify the reasons WHY you drink – understand the triggers that lead to your drinking and develop plans for how to deal with those issues without turning to alcohol or other substance to cope. AND
  3. Discover positive healthy alternatives to drinking and ways to release positive happy brain chemicals.  (Watch this video for more on changing your brain chemistry.)

Exercise and fitness routines address all three items above. Fitness goals give you something to strive for.  Exercise helps you to deal with stress and anxiety, giving you a physical outlet and way to alleviate emotional tension and build up and it helps you to release brain chemicals that make you feel good, such as dopamine, serotonin and endorphins.

So start now, slowly if you need to, but begin to include physical activity into your life.  But don’t forget to have FUN with it instead of just creating another task to check off of your To-Do list.  Workout with a friend or a group – dance instead of just doing time on a treadmill – or join a rowing club or group that is all about inspiring physical activity, but whatever it is, do something that brings you joy as well as benefiting your mind and body.

Set some goals for what you would like to accomplish – losing weight, reducing blood pressure or running a 5k – and then schedule it into your days or weeks.  Start today.