We’re all looking for a better, more fun, more enjoyable workout. One that leaves us feeling uplifted, energized — and a bit like a badass. Okay, a lot like a badass. But, when it comes to smell — er — that’s the one thing we’re typically trying to have LESS of during a workout. However, turns out the right smell, a la aromatherapy, may actually help your workout. We chatted with Tracy Griffiths — creator of Aroma Yoga, director of the Life Energy Institute and spokesperson for Young Living Essential Oils — about how and why that is, plus easy ways you can boost your next sweat sesh.
What are the benefits of incorporating aromatherapy into a workout?
“Aromatherapy, when used during a workout, helps us bring our body, mind and our intentions into the present moment, thus increasing our focus and attention on any task at hand, especially our workouts.”
How can you incorporate aromatherapy into exercise?
“Place a drop or two on the palms, gently rub the palms together, bring the cupped hands over the nose and deeply inhale, completely exhale and repeat two to five more times. As you are practicing this deep, slow breathing exercise, take this time to set your intention for your workout.”
What scents do you recommend for getting energized to move?
“The crisp scents of rosemary, peppermint or lemon can help sharpen our awareness and help us become more mentally and emotionally connected to our physical body. Because of the physiological and emotional components of the olfactory system (how our brain processes scents), we can use our sense of smell to anchor a particular feeling to a particular essential oil. So by breathing in favorite essential oils, it may trigger a positive emotional response and help us get in the ‘zone’ before working out. Most athletes know being in a positive and empowering mindset is crucial to a successful workout. Using aromatherapy in your fitness routines can be a great way to get the most out of yourself!”
Anything else we can do to boost our workouts?
“Close your eyes and visualize how you want to show up for yourself. See if you can visualize your body going through the exercises. Focusing your mind and being present can really make a difference in how you feel before, during and post workout.”
Will you try it? I’ve been using lemon oil in my diffuser to get energized to write lately. And now I’m excited to try it before I hit the gym! —Jenn