By: Bernadette Moore
Figuring out the quickest way to get fit and healthy can be daunting. There's way too much information being thrown at us that we are trying to wade through everyday. At the end of the day, because of how tough it seems, many people decide to give up on their health goals and throw in the towel instead. The wellness industry is not meant to be a tough world to navigate and with a few tips, health and fitness may become much simpler than it seems.
Here are 5 ways to simplify your health routine, starting today:
1. Ditch the counting
While it is a great idea to find out how much you are eating compared to how much you should be (counting calories), it is not recommended as a way to start your new healthy lifestyle. Tracking can be confusing (especially for a beginner). Try not to worry about the numbers or calories but rather focus on the habits mentioned below. Develop healthier habits and focus on how your mind and body feels after a certain meal, nutrient, or portion. Starting with less intense goals and taking it all step by step will give you much more confidence in your ability to start and stick to new habits.
2. Stop worrying about what you need to eliminate
Instead of focusing on eliminating certain habits (eating fried foods, downing a pint of ice-cream after a tough day, being sedentary, etc.), focus on just adding healthier ones instead. Eat more greens, have a smoothie for breakfast, walk 20 minutes a day, take the stairs instead. Every time you stick to your goals and focus on adding more of the good stuff to your daily routines, you gain confidence in your abilities. When you find the healthy habits that integrate well into your daily life and are able to implement them, your needs to take part in unhealthy behaviors will soon dissipate. And it will inspire you to try additional healthy ones as well.
3. Make a work-out plan that fits your schedule
Make a plan that you know you will enjoy and that you can recover from easily. Your work-out routine does not need to be drawn out every day. In fact, many fitness aficionados don’t realize that 1.5 hours a day should be the max amount of time they spend working out. At that point, your body needs nutrients put back in to see the best results and to recover well. If you are just starting a fitness regime or restarting after a long time, be patient and give yourself room to grow. Starting with 15-30 minutes, 3-5 times a week is a perfect place to begin.
Finding a routine you enjoy may be pushing it for some people. However, it is important that whichever exercise you decide works best for you, is something you enjoy. Try different classes until you find one you like or go for a 30 minute walk a few times a week. Do not try to stick to the latest trend or what others describe as the “best routine” if you absolutely hate it. Find one you love instead.
The 3-5 days a week rule is important. This isn’t only to make sure you have time but also because recovery is essential. You need time to reset, to let your body rest up, and give yourself a mental break. The amount of rest days needed will be different for everyone.
5. Focus on being healthy over being fit
Know that the health and fitness worlds don’t always coincide. When it comes to many things out there (fitness or aesthetic related), they won’t always have your overall health in mind. Not every gimmick is healthy and feeling completely miserable in the search of a body goal is not health. Health comes in many shapes and sizes. Aside from including external body goals, it is also an internal state. Your mental health and happiness should always be on the top of your priority list. You should always come back to the question: “Is this routine I’m trying benefitting me mentally or is it slowly draining me emotionally?”.
You are worth figuring out how to find your own balance. You are worth knowing that your routine doesn’t have to be the same as the next person's. You are worth knowing that health and fitness isn’t supposed to be something that you resent. To start your health and fitness goals, make sure to follow the 5 tips discussed above and to monitor your progress based on both your mind and body states.
By: Bernadette Moore from www.bemoorefitness.net
Editor: Dr. Francesca Vazquez
Photo Source: Lululemon/Tumblr