female trainer talks to two men on exercise machines during a fitness therapy programOur mental health and addiction treatment programs offer opportunities for clients to engage in regular physical activity at a level that is appropriate to their comfort level and physical abilities. Fitness activities vary by treatment program but may include:

  • Fitness, nutrition and wellness assessments
  • Visits to onsite gyms or gyms in the community
  • Yoga or stretching
  • Education about nutrition and fitness and their benefits in recovery
  • Physical activities like walking and hiking

The Importance of Fitness in Recovery

A healthy lifestyle is important for everyone, but particularly those recovering from substance use disorder, eating disorders, and other mental health disorders. For people who have abused substances, a healthy diet can ease some of the complaints in early recovery (e.g., digestive issues) and repair nutritional deficiencies that are common with addiction. Regular exercise can ward off certain withdrawal symptoms and promote a number of physical and mental benefits.

The advantages of regular exercise can include:

  • Improved quality of sleep
  • Increased energy, motivation and productivity
  • Maintenance of a healthy weight
  • Improved focus and concentration
  • Decreased susceptibility to health problems such as diabetes, metabolic syndrome, obesity, certain cancers, depression and arthritis
  • Improved flexibility and stronger muscles and bones
  • Stronger overall sense of well-being

Exercise can also be a vital relapse prevention tool. Physical activity can activate the neuroendocrine response (responsible for the “runner’s high”). It can also be a healthy way to cope with stress, triggers, and other difficult feelings.

Fitness can help prevent relapse by:

  • Easing depression and anxiety symptoms
  • Minimizing drug cravings
  • Serving as a positive distraction when faced with triggers
  • Helping people in recovery maintain an overall healthy lifestyle
  • Providing structure to the day without turning to drugs, alcohol, food, sex or other addictions

In line with our commitment to holistic addiction treatment, Promises Austin offers personalized Recovery Fitness programs. Recovery Fitness is a complete health and wellness program that uses evidence-based approaches to build strength, flexibility, stamina, balance, coordination and other elements of fitness. Clients have access to:

  • Fitness, nutrition and wellness assessments
  • Three hour-long group fitness classes per week, which build camaraderie, accountability, and motivation
  • Group yoga once weekly and personal yoga classes once weekly by request
  • 60-minute personal training sessions with certified personal trainers
  • Education about nutrition and fitness and their application to addiction recovery

Making Sobriety Fun

In the Recovery Fitness program, there is no typical workout. From yoga and resistance training to swimming, clients are sure to discover an activity they enjoy. This type of cross-training not only helps prevent injury and promotes full-body fitness but also makes exercise therapy fun. Life without drugs and alcohol doesn’t have to be boring.

The program is designed to suit people of all ages and fitness levels, with an emphasis on proper technique and functional movements (the types of movements needed for comfort in daily living, such as being able to pick up your children and grandchildren). Instruction is provided by a team of certified personal trainers, CrossFit certified coaches, certified yoga instructors, and licensed dieticians.

The Importance of a Healthy Lifestyle in Addiction Recovery

A healthy lifestyle is important for anyone, but particularly those recovering from drug and alcohol addiction. Research shows that a healthy diet can ease some of the complaints in early recovery (e.g., digestive issues) and repair nutritional deficiencies that are common among addicts. Regular exercise promotes quality sleep, boosts energy and provides an overall sense of well-being.

Diet and exercise are also vital relapse prevention tools. Recovery Fitness workouts are designed to activate the neuroendocrine response (responsible for the “runner’s high”), which can help ease depression, anxiety, and other issues. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle may also minimize drug cravings, serve as a positive distraction and is a beneficial way to structure the day without using drugs or alcohol.

Take Control of Your Health

Recovery Fitness empowers clients to be self-sufficient and in control of their health after they leave the program. No health clubs or home gyms are necessary – only the class workbooks clients take with them and the knowledge gained in the classes. Most workouts take one hour and rely on medicine balls, dumbbells, jump ropes, resistance bands and other equipment that can easily translate to life at home.