There is a lot of information out there about the best way to lose weight, stay in shape, get fit and be healthy. It seems like every week there is a new miracle diet, workout program or fitness fad that claims to be revolutionary. Although it is impossible to discount every aspect of every one of these claims, the old saying, “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is,” seems to apply very nicely.
It is certainly important to be healthy but many people for many years have managed to figure out how to do so without cutting-edge diets or programs. The truth is that whatever positive results have come from such programs are most likely just the result of paying more attention to the basics. It does take work, consistency and dedication to maintain a healthy lifestyle but it doesn’t have to be complicated. Here are a handful of the most important elements to keep in mind in order to enjoy greater health and wellness.
“You Are What You Eat”
Although we obviously can’t take this saying literally, a healthy diet is an essential part of any fitness regime. Develop the habit of consuming healthy foods and limiting foods that are excessively fatty and processed. Every person’s specific needs will vary but you’ll find that simply paying greater attention to what you consume and attempting to eat a balanced diet will yield positive results. Remember that improving your personal level of health and fitness is a process that takes time so avoid extremes of any kind in food consumption.
“No Pain, No Gain”
Sometimes there is no substitute for good ol’ fashioned hard work. Regular exercise is a crucial ingredient in healthy lifestyles. Exercising consistently will help to boost your metabolism, improve muscle function and allow the body to rest more efficiently. There are so many ways to exercise that everyone should be able to find a procedure that works for them. As mentioned with the food consumption, it is important to avoid extremes (and this applies both to weight training and cardiovascular fitness). The key to effective exercise is consistency—working out one day and then taking a week off will not yield any sort of meaningful result. It is better to do light exercise each day than it is to do intense exercise sporadically. Get into a routine and set time aside specifically for exercise because it is so often the first thing to go when our days get hectic.
“Early to Bed”
Being well rested is one of the most important elements in maintaining a healthy body and lifestyle. A lack of consistent, quality sleep leads to fatigue, which compromises the immune system and can lead to a host of other health issues. Some studies suggest that there are clear and direct links between healthy levels of sleep and overall happiness. There is no substitute for good sleep so work hard to develop good sleep habits so that you can settle into a healthy sleep schedule—the average person requires between six and eight hours of sleep.
Paisley Hansen is a freelance writer and expert in fitness and nutrition, and is currently studying vitamin d benefits on the body. She hopes her writing will help and inspire others to live healthier, and be happier.