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Does Religion Have a Part in Fitness?

Does Religion Help You Stay Physically Fit?

To many people, working out is a religious experience. Instead of heading to a steeple or temple, the gym is their sacred place. And sometimes, the two become intertwined. Yoga, for instance, can be part of a spiritual ritual as well as a physical workout.

I recently had a discussion with a religious leader who said that she finds some of her most clear and powerful religious moments come to her when she is also on a physical high. She says her daily routine and relationship with God powers her through her workouts when she feels ready to give up. Does religion have a part in your gym routine?

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foxymardy foxymardy 6 years
It does for me. I'm a Muslim so that means I need to pray 5 times a day, fast for a month in a year, do pilgrimage at least once in a lifetime. If I'm not fit and I don't take care of myself, its easy to get lazy and feel sluggish whenever I need to perform my daily prayers. If I don't control what I eat and practice self control, the one month fasting will be hard and I end up eating a lot when I break fast, which defeats the whole purpose of fasting. If I am not healthy, pilgrimage to Mecca will be very difficult. So yea, it does motivate me significantly.
amber512 amber512 6 years
I'm quite religious, but I don't think it affects my fitness.
Spectra Spectra 6 years
It helps me. Sometimes I use my workout time as a time to pray for my family, friends, coworkers, etc. It's my "alone time" where I think about things that I don't have time to think about in my daily life.
2muchtv 2muchtv 6 years
If I were more religious, it probably would have a greater role in my overall health. Lots of times certain foods are banned to encourage us to eat more protein (since as vegetarians, we tend to get lazy). Also, occasional fasts are encouraged to re-acquaint ourselves with hunger (as well as other reasons, but like I said, I'm not that religious). Lately there's been an emphasis on eating real foods at my temple, because eating junk food is committing violence towards ourselves and others (because of all the manufacturing/transportation involved in bringing all that stuff to us). As for my actual gym routine, no. But there is emphasis on doing items by hand instead of machine (you're more mindful of how your actions are affecting those around you), so I guess that encourages movement.
tlsgirl tlsgirl 6 years
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