Everyone wants to be healthy. When we say healthy, we often think about fitness models that have nice abs, toned arms, and flattering muscles. But sometimes, we forget that before they had that body, they also had to make adjustments in the beginning of their fitness journey. Here are healthy habits that you should adopt, so you can get started on your fitness goals.
1. Make walking a habit.
Hate exercising? Don’t be ashamed. We’ve all been there. You don’t have to start exercising immediately, but you can start by walking. Research says that walking for 30 minutes can help reduce fat and strengthen muscles. What’s great about this is you don’t have to exert too much effort. It’s as simple as walking from your home to your tricycle terminal. Need a snack? Take the stairs, go down to the deli and have a sandwich! Soon after, you can transition into brisk walking and then into jogging.
2. Drink more water.
Eight (8) glasses of water a day is the recommended daily intake. But sometimes, you’re just too busy to drink water. Aside from drinking a glass of water while eating, try drinking water at least once every 2 hours. Drinking water can give your more energy, lessen your cravings, and give you healthier looking skin. Nowadays, there are phone apps that can remind you to drink water and track how much you’ve consumed. Think water is too bland for your taste? Try infusing your water with some fruits and veggies. It’ll help with the taste; plus it’ll have more vitamins and nutrients.
3. Drink less coffee.
Coffee is such an addicting concoction. It has many benefits like keeping you alert and focused. However, studies have shown that too much coffee is simply not healthy. Too much caffeine can lead to ulcers and heartburn. But we all know that quitting coffee is easier said than done. So instead of cutting out coffee completely, lessen your intake day by day. Why not try to take only 2 cups of coffee instead of your usual 3? If your missing your energy boost, try taking alternatives like green tea and lemon water.
4. Eat more vegetables.
Love to eat out? Aside from your usual meat-and-rice combo, order some salad. Instead of depriving yourself of food, just add some vegetables in your diet. You’ll get more nutrients such as potassium and vitamins A, C, and E. Vegetables also contain more fiber. Thus, you’ll be assured of constipation-free days! One to four cups of vegetables per day can help reduce risk of chronic diseases like heart disease and diabetes. After building the habit of eating vegetables, you can start thinking about eating healthier foods.
5. Don’t skip any meals.
Never ever skip meals! Think it’s the best way to lose weight? Studies have shown that skipping meals DO NOT help you lose weight, but helps you GAIN more unhealthy weight instead. Skipping meals promote bad eating habits that mess up your metabolism. Aside from that, it makes healthy food unappetizing. Because you have been depriving yourself of food, you’ll rationalize that your next meal should be the juiciest and greasiest burger. Because of this, it’ll be hard for you to transition to eating proper diet with a balance of protein, carbs, veggies, and fruits.
6. Take your vitamins.
While we’re on the subject of getting nutrients, help your body get what you need by taking some supplements. Take vitamin C to help you boost your energy and strengthen your immune system. Get more calcium from supplements to help you lose weight, reduce diabetes, and lessen PMS. While you’re still curbing your desire for fast food, taking vitamins will help get your body the right nutrition. But don’t forget that vitamins and supplements are just substitutes! Proper diet is still the best answer when it comes to being more healthy.
7. Get plenty of sleep.
Partying all night may be cool but depriving yourself of sleep is not doing your body any good. Being able to function well at work after getting only 3 hours sleep is not something you should be proud of. It’s really important that your mind and body get the rest it needs–nay, deserves! Sleeping for seven to eight hours a day will help you build more muscles and give you flawless skin. Now, that’s not a bad deal!
8. Take some “me” time.
Take a break. Find a quiet place and do something that will relax you. Being healthy does not only concern the physical needs of your body. You also have to take care of your mind. Everyday, you’ll encounter many stressors—your boss, the deadly commute, the unpaid bills—and the stress they bring affects your mind and body negatively. So it’s important that you take a step back to breathe in and out. Too busy? Take a 15-minute break away from your work desk. Just stepping away from your work for a few minutes can help you manage the stress at work. Been doing too much overtime? Dedicate a day or two when you finish all your work and leave as soon as your shift ends. Soon, you’ll be able to manage your time better and you’ll feel good about spending time away from work stress.
Once you start making these adjustments, you’ll find that it’s easy to make healthy choices. Continue making adjustments and soon you’ll see that it’s not hard to be healthy at all. With determination and patience, you’ll get that fit and flattering body you’re aiming for.
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Lorey is a small girl with a big appetite for love, life, culture, and food. Yes, most especially, food.