In a perfect world, we would all be eating the right food, exercising, sleeping well and enjoying life in general.
In the real world, most of us manage a percentage of the healthy lifestyle and manage the best we can with the rest. Part of the problem is that we are encouraged to think, especially by the media, that we should do everything we can to lead a healthy lifestyle, all the time. For most of us, this is not possible.
The constant preoccupation with what we should or shouldn’t do causes our stress levels to increase and that negates any good work we’ve done. Yes, we should certainly try to lead a healthy lifestyle, but the two key words are “moderation” and “balance”. In applying these criteria to achieve a healthy lifestyle, we will not punish ourselves for not following another diet or for abandoning the last exercise regimen.
A common mistake that many people make when they decide to adopt a healthy lifestyle is to try to do too much too soon. Then there is a guilt complex when everything falls apart. It is also easy to be influenced by others when we should only adopt a healthy life plan for ourselves.
Did I say a lifestyle plan? Do you have one, or just try the next thing in your Sunday magazine or supplement? Of course, read these articles and keep them in mind when planning how you want your healthy lifestyle to take shape.
Living a healthy lifestyle doesn’t mean you have to run a mile before breakfast, eat seeds, and think pure. Great if that’s what you want, but for most of us “healthy” means being in good shape, eating our fruits and vegetables, and generally having a sense of vitality.
Decide on your definition of a healthy lifestyle and then plan a strategy that works for you.
As part of my health plan, I decided I wanted to walk in the mornings before breakfast, but there was no way to get up at dawn to do it. So I planned a ten-minute circuit that included a short flight of stairs and a gentle slope. I walked that route every day and felt great. I’m sure I wouldn’t make it to the City to Surf marathon, but I made a commitment and made it work for me.
Nowadays, a lot is done with organic food, but the reality is that organic food is generally more expensive and out of reach of most budgets. Yes organic is probably the best option, but this does not mean that if you are not eating all organic you are not eating well. If you are concerned about products in general, be a little picky when shopping. Look for fruits and vegetables that are fresh and impeccable. You should also buy brands of products you can trust. If you shop wisely, you can have a healthy, well-balanced diet that won’t waste your money.
Basically, living a healthy lifestyle means looking at your lifestyle as a whole, not just diet and exercise. You don’t always need to make major changes. Most people know their weaknesses and are happy if they can make some changes that show results.
A friend of mine was drinking several cans of soda a day. She felt tired and generally unwell. When I read an article about the health risk of soda, I copied it and gave it to her, so she decided to quit soda at that time. A week later she called me and told me that she couldn’t believe the difference, that her energy levels were high and that she was feeling great. Only that change was able to make a difference and it feels good with the healthy choice.
Sleep and free time play an important role in a healthy lifestyle, and most people underestimate the value of good sleep. Our bodies are not designed to function at full capacity 24 hours a day. Anyone in the industry knows that machines that have to work continuously need a lot of maintenance. When we are sleeping our body is healing and regenerating and we should wake up feeling refreshed and revitalized.
We can go a long time without sleep, but we cannot do it indefinitely. The amount of sleep an individual needs vary greatly, and there is no such thing as the right time to sleep. Obviously, most people sleep at night, but if you are one of those people who comes to life in the early hours of the morning, you may need to catch up on your sleep during the day.
A big part of a healthy life is being comfortable with yourself. Don’t feel pressured to try to make an appearance.