One can look forward to a better lifestyle by taking 10 easy measures that will boost one's wellness and satisfaction while providing a long and healthy life
Many of us struggle to lose weight because of demanding schedules, familial obligations, the ease and convenience of fast food, and genetics. Health is, of course, about more than just weight but also about wellness and satisfaction. Below are 10 easy steps that can help you live a healthier life.
1. Keep a food journal
Keeping a food journal, which records the type and amount of food you consume, will help you find direction and enable you to stay on track with your diet. A visual list of your eating habits is a sure way to identify what your strengths and weaknesses are, whether it be eating too much pizza or forgetting to eat lunch and eating too much later. The food journal can therefore be a starting point in altering bad habits and strengthening good ones. A food journal can also give you an indication of the types of food your body may be lacking.
2. Introduce your body to weight training
While those who aim to lose weight often focus mainly on cardio, lifting weights has been proven key to losing and maintaining weight. It is now time to shake things up and use those dumbbells that you have been utilizing as doorstoppers. Working your muscles along with your heart will improve your health and weight training will tone those flabby bits to reflect a firmer you in the mirror. As muscle burns calories quicker than fat, building muscle will allow you to burn more calories, even while at rest. Those squats that you dread are in fact your answer to an increased metabolism.
3. Change your pace
Scare fat away with shock by changing the pace of your workout. Interval training is an ideal method in changing pace. Keeping to your routine is comfortable, but try increasing the tempo of your already-existing workout by doing what you are doing a little faster in short spurts of time. This will rapidly increase your heart rate and burn fat and calories at a faster rate.
4. Take a break
A tired mind and soul means a tired body and increased cortisol levels, a hormone that helps stabilize stress levels. Cortisol is a hormone made by the two adrenal glands, one is located on each kidney, and it is essential for life. Cortisol helps to maintain blood pressure, immune function and the body's anti-inflammatory processes.
Too much of a good thing is bad. Elevated levels in your body may result in the accumulation of fat around your stomach. Reduce your stress levels with meditation, a relaxing bath or simply dedicating some time for yourself.
5. Vitamin D
Working 9 to 5 in an office often means leaving home before sunrise and getting home after sunset, depriving many of natural sun light throughout the day.
Vitamin D helps your body absorb calcium.
Sunlight contains a natural source of vitamin D and a deficiency may result in hunger pangs and unnecessary snacking. Try sitting outside during your lunch break or alternatively take vitamin D supplements coupled with calcium.
6. Eat healthy fats
In the struggle to lose weight people often make the mistake of cutting out all fats. Your body is in need of certain healthy fats for a healthy, glowing you. Oils contained in fish such as salmon and in nuts and avocados are great sources of healthy fats that will increase your energy and assist in weight loss.
7. Take a day off from the gym
Exercise should not be a dreadful chore that you detest. If you are exercising seven days a week, it will eventually take its toll on your mind and body. Give yourself a day off whereby you relax and allow your body to recover.
The chances of returning to your workout the next day with energy are high and far more effective than sluggishly going to the gym and not performing at your peak.
8. Cheat Day
Grant yourself one cheat day a week to eat what you want without feeling guilty. Altering your tastebuds and changing habit takes time. The last thing you want to do is lock the cupboard door with you in it and binge on that chocolate mud cake you have been eyeing for the last three weeks. Eat a slice rather than the entire cake.
9. Clock up on the z's
This may sound like music to your ears, but sleep actually assists in weight loss. A restful night's sleep is very important to your mental and physical wellbeing. During sleep, your body is recovering from the wear and tear that it undergoes during the day. Lack of sleep cuts this recovery period leaving you tired for a new day. Sleep assists in weight loss by levelling out leptin, which is the hormone commonly referred to as the starvation hormone. This protein tells your brain you have sufficient energy to workout. Start counting sheep earlier for a smaller waistline.
10. Add variety
Changing the pace of your workout is just as important as trying a new workout in a different setting. Just like your mind, your body also needs variety. Doing the same monotonous and repetitive routine bores your body and does not do you any favors.
In fact, your body will actually get used to a repeated workout and plateau. Try stepping off the treadmill and try an aerobics class, a bicycle, or hit the beach to run along the sand. Be creative. Your body will thank you.