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You probably know that exercise is great for your body, and that meditation and mindfulness are great for your mind and emotional wellbeing.


So, it makes total sense that combining the two activities would bring added benefits, right?


It does!


When you practice them together, you have better focus, less stress, and greater enjoyment – of both at the same time. So, you’re more likely to continue working out and practicing mindfulness, and it all builds on itself in an ever-expanding circle of self-care and empowerment.


It’s easy to incorporate these basic principles of meditation/mindfulness into your workouts. Promise! And if you are already doing Pilates then many of these practices you will be very familiar with. We use almost all of them in every class.


  1. Start by meditating a few times at home, sitting still and focusing as much as possible on simply breathing. Try it for just a minute or two to start and add a little time when you’re able. NOTE: You’re not trying to become a “world champion” meditator! (There is no such thing, thankfully!) You just want to experience it a few times before you carry it into the gym. Try a guided meditation app or recording if you feel awkward.
  2. Similarly, stretch your mindfulness awareness, as well. Mindfulness is similar to meditation, and the two help each other. It means trying to be actively present and aware in each moment – to really pay attention to what you’re doing or going through, without judgment.
  3. Next, at the gym, try these steps:
  • Engage in a brief meditation before working out. You can do this in the car, locker room, or even in the gym. Just take a few seconds to focus your thoughts on a few deep, calming breaths.
  • Briefly take note of what you see, smell, and feel – being aware of your surroundings.
  • Set an intention for your workout, just like a Pilates instructor often asks of her students. All of this takes just a very short time and can be as simple as, “I want to enjoy my workout today.”
  • Throughout the workout, check in with your body, scanning from head to toe to see how you’re feeling – again, without judgment. This is not a workout critique! It’s merely self-awareness and acceptance.
  • Continually check to make sure you’re fully present in the workout, not thinking about errands you must run later, or the misunderstanding you had with your partner.
  • Close the workout with another brief meditation, focusing on few deep breaths and giving silent thanks for your amazing body and all it can do.


The most important thing is this: Don’t judge yourself. Just be present and aware.


I know you’ll be amazed at how much this helps – and at how quickly you start to build on it, at the gym and elsewhere.