We all know the importance of exercising and eating right. However, it’s easy to give up on these healthier decisions the moment our conveniences are being compromised.
Committing to exercise also means that we have to wake up at 5 AM every day to hit the treadmill before we go to work. Committing to stay away from sugar and drinking is synonymous to saying no to our favorite donut and turning down friends’ party invite on a Friday night. Since we have to give up so much of what we usually enjoy to stick to these healthy choices, we end up going back to our unhealthy patterns in the end.
This should not be the case, considering the fact that an unhealthy lifestyle often leads to a myriad of diseases and complications later on in life.
To always keep choosing to be healthy despite the inconveniences and temptations, it’s very important that one understands their motivation for this decision. It is also essential to understand the effects of these choices of being healthy.
To help you keep the right mindset in pursuing your fitness journey, keep these 5 lifestyle changes that make you healthier in mind:
Tip No. 1: Exercise daily.
In an article published by Psychology Today, it was revealed that aside from losing weight, one of the best advantages of exercising daily is building aerobic power. Aerobic power is the ability of our bodies to work at its maximum by collecting and transmitting oxygen from the air to our tissues. Surprisingly, people lose 1% of aerobic power per year. This means that as you get older, you experience more puffing and huffing. If you engage in long-term exercise activities, you can limit the loss of aerobic capacity by 50%. This means that instead of losing 30% aerobic capacity in 30 years, with an adequate amount of exercise, we only lose 15%.
Tip No. 2: Eat right.
To compliment exercise, you will attain better health results if you also eat the right kinds of food. Depending on your goal, remember to keep sugar, carbohydrates, saturated fat, and salt consumption down to the minimum. Ditch junk food and fast food for green leafy vegetables, fiber, and good fat. Studies suggest that if you eat healthier, you will also look and feel good. Aside from managing your weight, you will also start having more energy and a better disposition.
Tip No. 3: Be more active.
Say goodbye to being a couch potato. In a report released by the World Health Organization, it was shown that 60 to 85% of the world population leads sedentary lifestyles, thus, making lack of physical activity the 4th highest factor leading to worldwide mortality. This clearly demonstrates why we should opt to be more active.
You can start with a 15 to 30-minute walk every day, then gradually increase your pace and the duration. Also, instead of taking the elevator, use the stairs instead. This is a good cardio exercise that will help you burn fat and strengthen your core.
Tip No. 4: Avoid smoking and drinking alcohol.
According to an article published by BMC Public Health, cigarettes hold almost 400 toxic chemicals (tar included) and over 4,000 chemical compounds that are either addictive or dangerous. It’s hard to enumerate the very long list of diseases and dangers that smoking can lead to.
While light drinking may be beneficial to the heart, heavy or binge drinking can lead to detrimental results. For men, 4 or fewer drinks of alcohol per day, or 3 or fewer drinks for women per day are considered low-risk alcohol consumption. If you go beyond that, it’s considered heavy or binge drinking.
Tip No. 5: Sleep more.
It’s a known fact that our cells regenerate and are repaired while we sleep, hence, to achieve a healthier body, it is important to get the right amount of sleep daily.
Now that we have explored the top 5 lifestyle changes that can help you become healthier let’s now move to another set of tips that could help you become emotionally better.
Tip No. 1: Nurture positive thoughts.
With all the stresses that we have to deal with every day, it’s easy to feel down, depressed, and miserable. As a result, we end up being tired, grumpy and dissatisfied with what we do. To help you feel emotionally better, try to dump all negative thoughts and replace the same with positive ones.
Of course, this change won’t happen overnight. You have to start training your mind to look at the brighter side of things. Learn to let go of what you can’t control and work on the things that you can still change.
If you start having positive thoughts, you’ll be happier, satisfied, and less stressed.
Tip No. 2: Surround yourself with positive people.
It’s not like you’re building a cult of positive people who detach themselves from reality. This advice only means that while you work on your positivity and if you want to keep a positive mindset, mingle with people who are happy and have positive dispositions. Like negativity, positive behavior is very contagious. Once you meet someone who radiates happiness rather than gloomy thoughts, you also start to feel better about yourself and your environment.
Tip No. 3: Develop an attitude of gratitude.
You never feel down if you count your blessings rather than your miseries. If you complain about your life and your circumstances, try looking behind you, and you’ll see that there are people who have worse circumstances than you. This alone is a reason for you to be thankful for.
In developing a thankful disposition, you will realize that you now shift your focus on the happier, finer, and more important aspects of life. At the end of the day, you have more to be thankful for than to worry about.
Tip No. 4: Invest aggressively in yourself.
Never feel guilty spending time on your self-improvement. If you want to improve the way you look, then go for it. If you want to learn a new hobby, take that lesson. You have the right to get what makes and keeps you happy. As long as these have positive effects on you and on your life, then don’t think twice. Do it.
Tip No. 5: Forgive yourself for your past mistakes.
If you haven’t let go of that past guilt or if you haven’t forgiven yourself for the wrong life decisions you’ve made, then now is the right time to let it all go. Commit all these negative emotions and thoughts to flames. You made mistakes, but you have to move from it. The more important thing is you learn from it. To be emotionally well, you have to choose happiness over a dark past.
We hope you find yourself on that journey towards a healthier and happier you!