Looking at people who live healthy, balanced lives may fill you with wonder. They seem to be cultivating a healthy lifestyle.
How do they do it?
How do they stick to it?
Why do you feel incapable of doing the same thing?
You might even think of a ‘healthy lifestyle’ and feel full of dread. However, there are ways you can cultivate a healthy lifestyle that doesn’t suck! Don’t believe us? Read on, and you’ll see for yourself!
FIGURE OUT WHAT A BALANCED MEAL IS
Do you know what a balanced meal is? You might think it’s plain chicken on top of green leaves (eurgh, boring), but that’s not the case. Balanced meals can be both filling and delicious while remaining healthy.
Start by learning how to read nutritional labels and get a feel for the different macronutrients, which may seem daunting, but it’s not that tough to get your head around.
For instance, each meal should balance proteins, healthy fats, and carbs. Protein helps to keep us full and retains muscle mass. Healthy fats support muscle and joint function and keep us full, while carbs power the brain and give us more energy.
When you focus on eating balanced meals, you will feel better each day and less prone to snacking on foods that aren’t the healthiest – although nothing is ‘off limits,’ you shouldn’t label foods’ good’ and ‘bad’. Foods are different and thus do different things for the body.
CULTIVATING A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE (THAT DOESN’T SUCK)
- Get Your NEAT Up Every Day.
NEAT stands for Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis. It sounds complicated, but it’s not. NEAT refers to the exercise you do while not working out – so running errands and completing chores. Getting your NEAT up by adding in a 10 minute walk every day or biking to the shop instead of driving can make a big difference. Even taking the stairs rather than the escalator counts. Smaller efforts spread throughout the day is how you can exercise without even realizing you’re doing it!
- Find A Form Of Exercise You Enjoy
Exercise is essential, but to stay consistent, you need to find a type you enjoy. Strengthening muscles, working on flexibility, and keeping your heart healthy are all reasons to find an exercise you like. Try a few different classes, for example. Yoga is gentle but great for flexibility, while high-intensity workouts will keep your heart healthy and release those endorphins. Try for three times a week to start with and add more only if you want to. You don’t have to be all or nothing!
- Practice Self-Care Every Day
Self-care is crucial for a healthy lifestyle. If you enjoy salt baths, take them regularly. Don’t cut out your Two Chimps Coffee just because you read an article telling you caffeine was no good for you. You need to continue doing the little things that make you happy!
- Don’t Focus On The Outcome – Focus on The Habit
Rather than focusing on the outcome, e.g. getting leaner, focus on the habit. When you focus on building the exercise habit, for example, getting leaner will be a natural result. Focus on doing it at the same time each day so that it’s harder for you not to do it than it is for you to do it.
How will you cultivate your healthy lifestyle?
**This is a collaborative post.