You’ve got to start somewhere.
Leading a healthy lifestyle is a necessity and while some of us have mastered it, some are still trying to make it a permanent way of life. To those who are still trying, don’t worry as we’ve all fallen off the health bandwagon before. It isn’t easy to be healthy. It is a conscious, everyday decision that in turn becomes a habitual routine.
Although maintaining a healthy lifestyle takes effort, you can always start small and yield big health rewards for your efforts. Here’s how you can start your journey to living a healthier lifestyle.
Plan Your Meals Ahead
Healthy snacks, an energizing breakfast, and a light lunch are key elements to a good daily diet. Spare some time after dinner to prepare your meals for the following day to avoid settling for quick fixes like deli sandwiches or instant noodles. Try to sneak in nutrients early in the morning with a smoothie that includes ingredients like kale, chia seeds, or flax seeds.
Be A Morning Person
Research suggests that early birds tend to be happier, healthier, and even slimmer than night owls. You can start by sleeping earlier to squeeze in that seven to eight hours of slumber. Don’t forget to turn off all screens an hour before bedtime. Practicing good sleep hygiene is important and will become a habit, rather than a chore, once the health benefits kick in.
Find Tasty Replacements
Adding herbs and spices to your meals is one of the tastiest ways to boost your health. These seasonings aren’t just packed with antioxidants, they are also great replacements for salt and sugar in recipes without compromising the flavour. You can also sprinkle cinnamon on your cappuccino, sip on a fresh mint tea, add ginger or turmeric to a stir fry or make your own tomato sauce with garlic, basil, and oregano.
Discover Your Favourite Workout
Movement and exercise should be a part of our daily lives. However, choosing a workout routine based on trends might put you off from doing regularly exercising. It’s important to find a style of exercise you like by trying out different classes, sports, and training styles. That way, when you are tired, it won’t feel like such a chore. Once it’s a routine, you can diversify your workout by mixing it up on a weekly basis.
Take It Slow
Make your goals S.M.A.R.T.: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely. If necessary, break a goal down into even smaller milestones like adding nutrient-dense foods like fruits and nuts to your eating plan and avoid processed foods. Gradually incorporate movement into your daily routine by using the stairs instead of the elevator, and take 10 to 15-minute movement breaks throughout the day, rather than every couple of hours. If that becomes your new daily ritual at a specific time, after three or four weeks, it will become a habit.