Six Tips for a Healthy Lifestyle
A new year always feels like the perfect opportunity for new beginnings. We enthusiastically jump headfirst into new ambitious fitness routines and health behaviors, but we often abandon them as quickly as we started. Our enthusiasm fades, and frustration and dissatisfaction set in quickly because we don’t see results right away or we find it hard to stick to our new plan. Sadly, we often repeat this year after year.
While most of us say we care about being healthy, it’s usually focused on a particular goal, like losing a certain amount of weight or running a 5K. Furthermore, there’s often the all-or-nothing attitude and when “life” happens, all is abandoned.
Thankfully, there is an effective way of building a long-term healthy and fit lifestyle that is not affected by life’s ups and downs. We need to change our mindset and approach to health and fitness and see it as a way of life and not a program.
6 Tips for a Healthy Lifestyle
1. Move More, Sit Less
• Focus on accumulating at least 10,000 steps a day (use an app or a fitness tracker).
• Inspire your family, co-workers, and friends to move more with you by creating a step challenge.
2. Exercise Regularly (make your life easy and follow a program)
• Cardio: 3–5 days/week, 20–60 minutes, moderate-to-vigorous level
• Strength: 2–3 non-consecutive days/week, all major muscles
• Flexibility: 5–7 days/week, all major joints, static stretching
• Try to sleep 7–8 hours per night.
• Take one day to rest every week.
• Take vacations to rest and relax.
4. Eat Minimally Processed Food
• Eat 3–5 servings of vegetables/fruits per day.
• Eat 100% whole grains.
• Limit/avoid simple sugars, saturated fat, and salt.
• Control your portions and eat regularly (especially a healthy breakfast).
5. Connect Regularly and Meaningfully
• Make a point to connect with family and friends.
• Spend time outdoors.
• Give back and be kind to all.
6. Cope with Stress
• Plan ahead and set priorities.
• Manage your time and your space well (stay organized).
• Take control and take responsibility.
Let’s transform our lives starting today, remembering it’s always one day at a time and one behavior at a time. Let’s focus on making healthier choices, be patient and stay focused.