Most people like the idea of being fit and healthy however hold back from committing to exercise regularly. The excuses are innumerable from a demanding career, lack of time, stress, lack of sleep and what not. The inspiration to exercise comes in spurts and goes away as quickly. Often the call to making changes comes from falling prey to lifestyle diseases like high blood pressure, diabetes, infertility and obesity.
Making simple changes in diet, regular exercise and managing your stress are the keys to good health, longevity and quality living. Its simple modifications that really matter rather than setting big goals which most people find difficult to stay with. A lot of living healthier has to do with how you think, what you say to yourself each day, and the choices you make when stressed for time or under emotional duress.
It’s so easy to pick the wrong food, skip a meal or reach out for a snack even when you are not hungry, miss out or shun exercise and physical activity, drink excessively, sleep late or simply become careless about your body. And when that happens we are prone to blame it on some situation or the other or assume that there’s always plenty of time to get it right.
Your wellbeing is really a lot about you and it shows in your body, your behavior and your ability to take responsibility and immediate sustaining action, no matter how small it is. Here are some simple tips you can adopt to make positive changes.
- Think positively and productively to train your mind to catch your thoughts and stay off negativity and procrastination. You need to create a mental map about reaching your goal. It has to be clear and any derailment should be rectified.
- Fill your plate with more vegetables. There are many changes we can make with our food to make it nutritionally balanced and enriching, but I have found suggesting on more veggies has worked magic for people. Its an answer for many food related concerns. Raw, steamed and lightly stir fried is the best way to eat your vegetables.
- You can manage erratic eating by breaking your meals into smaller meals/snacks. Having small 3-4 meals in regular intervals throughout the day will keep your metabolism and energy levels steadily elevated. This also allows you to manage your weight, reduce cravings, and make healthier food choices. Fruits, nuts, salads, boiled eggs, carrot sticks etc. are some examples.
- Exercise every day. Lack of energy and time are just excuses made by the lazy. Exercise frees up more energy and you have to make time for it. Even as little as 15 minutes of exercise a day can make a difference. I suggest at least 3-4 days of regular and organised exercise in a week and staying active on the remaining days.
- Good sleep. It is one of the most essential aspects of wellbeing. Many people suffer sleep deprivation today and most of it is self inflicted. Your body needs to feel completely rested to recharge, repair and heal. Towards this, you must ensure that you sleep at the same time approximately every night and get 6-8 hours of good sleep on average every day. Here please note that quality of sleep you get is more important that the quantity. If you are highly stressed, it is also a good idea to get what is now termed as power naps of as little as 10 minutes of shut eye in between your hectic schedule. This will do wonders to rejuvenate you.
- Begin with small changes. This will allow you to progress more effectively rather than get overwhelmed and go off track. Don’t make room for excuses, and even if you deviate every now and then, accept it and move forward, right back on schedule.