Relaxing That Doesn’t Involve Exercising

Hello, I’m Lauren, and I write over at Breathe Deeply and Smile .  It’s a blog about learning to balance healthy living with enjoying life in a stress-free way.  I’m a runner and semi-health nut who is also a Sweat Pink Ambassador .I’m always trying to live a healthier life and learning to not sweat the small stuff while remembering that life is too short to be unhappy!


I run and workout 5-6 days a week which serves as the main form of stress relief in my life. I am not very strict with my workout planning so if I had a rough day and just need to run a few miles, that’s what I’ll do.

With this week being a taper week before my third half marathon tomorrow, and my new focus to work on unplugging I have been figuring out ways to relive stress, that do not involve running or hard workouts.

1. Reading books and magazines. I’ve gotten really caught up in spending free moments checking email, reading blogs, and scrolling through Instagram and twitter feeds. While I still stay connected, I’ve limited it to certain blocks of time. I now spend time before bed reading instead of using my laptop or phone, which disrupts your sleep anyways!

2. Yoga. This is not a cheat because it’s a form of exercise. I’ve had some trouble getting to a hot yoga class once a week, but I have embraced doing some yoga in my apartment. I really like Tara Stiles videos and even doing a 20 minute video where I can mediate, focus on breathing, and stretch is really relaxing. I don’t wear my Polar HRM and focus on how I feel not how many calories I’m burning.

3. Leaving myself extra time in the morning and evening. I love when I’m able to sit at the kitchen table in the morning and enjoy a hot cup of tea or coffee and read a newspaper or magazine instead of having to rush around the kitchen and hurry to leave for work. Similarly, I like to unwind with a hot cup of tea (decaf J) at night and watching a movie or some mindless TV (hello Bravo Network) while I make a list of what I have to do the next day or week instead of staying up to late cleaning or packing my lunches in a hurry.

4. Cooking. I don’t mean making a quick dinner or throwing together a salad or powerbowl for lunch. I’ve recently really enjoyed taking the time to meal plan and pick out some recipes to make that might take a more than 20 minutes. Also I love baking so I’ve made some banana bread, protein cookies, and homemade granola bars. It keeps healthy snacks around the house for my boyfriend and me and is also really relaxing to me to be able to leisurely spend some hours following recipes and making some food.

Here are some ways I’ve been relaxing because stress is bad for your waistline, health, and general well-being!


  • What are some ways you are relieving stress and staying happy?
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    • Ashley says

      A leisurely walk with my hubby and dogs is one of my favorite activities too. I’m so glad it’s warming up here so we can take them more often!

  1. says

    I’ve just found yoga myself! Although I love running, sometimes yoga + a walk with a friend is the perfect, low-key stress reliever.

  2. says

    I give myself a lot of time in the morning because itz my “me” time. after my workout and shower, I sit at my computer, eating breakfast, reading blogs, and just relaxing!

  3. says

    I unwind and and de-stress with a hot bath most nights. There is something so relaxing about laying in scalding hot water, locking the doors(away from my kids) and taking 20 minutes to soak away the stress and worries from the day.

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