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We all know there are enormous benefits to being healthy. Who wouldn't want to improve their well-being and feel better overall? Even if the benefits are obvious, it can be difficult to make healthy lifestyle changes that you will stick to. Instead of attempting to make huge changes all at once, try some (or all) of the following 10 ways to be more healthy:
1. Sneak In Veggies
There are a lot of different ways to add vegetables to your meals without altering the flavor. Almost any vegetable can be added to scrambled eggs. Try spinach, cauliflower or broccoli. Smoothies are easy to make and easy to add vegetables to, like kale, avocado or carrots. Sandwiches also an excellent option for adding vegetables, as well as quesadillas and burgers.
2. Pack A Lunch
Not only will you save some money, but you'll be able to make healthier food choices as opposed to going out to eat, getting fast food or grabbing something out of a vending machine. If you don't have time to pack a lunch everyday, try meal planning and do some meal prep at the beginning of the week so your lunches are ready to go. We use these meal prep containers.
3. Move More
Find times to add more movement to your day. If you work at a desk all day, set a timer to get up every 10 - 15 minutes and move around; walk, do jumping jacks, squats, push ups, etc. Get up and do a few exercises during commercial breaks when you're watching TV. Take a walk while you're talking on the phone, either in the house or around the block.
4. Get A Workout Buddy
Having someone else to commit to, be accountable to and be motivated by, can help you get through your workouts. Humans inherently carry a competitive nature, so you will usually push yourself closer to your limits when in a group setting or with a workout buddy. This friendly race to be the best will tend to make you strive for a higher level of fitness than you otherwise might have attained. A personal trainer is a good idea too ;)
5. Get More Sleep
Adequate sleep is one of the most important components of being healthy, but many of us don't get enough. Try to go to bed 5 - 10 minutes earlier to get a little extra sleep. Gradually increase the time over a few weeks if you're still not getting enough.
Everyone is busy. School, work, kids, life. There are always things to do, but you are the one in charge of your schedule. Make sure you give yourself some time to unwind and do things that you enjoy doing. Take time for yourself and actually relax.
7. Drink Water Before Eating
Another important component of being healthy, yet most of us do not drink enough water. Drinking water before eating is not only a great way to drink more, but may also keep you from eating too much. Many times when you feel hungry, you are actually just thirsty.
8. Stick to Exercises You Love
You'll be more likely to continue exercising if you do something your really enjoy instead of something you feel like you're obligated to do. Whether it's dancing, biking, walking or even gardening, being physically active should make you feel good. Choose different types of activities and think outside the box. As long as you are challenging your body and a little out of breath, you are exercising.
9. Remember to Stretch
Range of motion in the joints is very important. Flexibility is needed to maintain it and stretching is what keeps the muscles flexible and strong. Stretching may help to reduce the risk of injury and can improve function. Muscles that can become chronically tense and tight benefit greatly from regular stretching and flexibility training. Keeping a resistance band around (like this one) is a great way to do some simple stretches throughout the day.
10. Laugh More
"Laughter is the best medicine". Who hasn't heard that phrase? Laughing is good for you emotional health. When you laugh, your brain releases serotonin, dopamine and endorphins. These hormones lift moods, enhance pleasure and induce euphoria. It also helps you to de-stress and relax more (remember #6?) So do/watch/read/listen to/be around people that will make you laugh more and try to have a good sense of humor.