How to Make Health and Fitness a Lifestyle

Being healthy and fit can help you look and feel good but is it all about great looks? 

Taking care of your physical body should also improve your quality of life as the right choices let you move with ease and endurance.

To stay fit, you should invest in a quality home or gym equipment to support your exercise routine. You can find various gear for different types of workouts here.

At the same time, a healthy lifestyle involves having a positive mental outlook and taking time to recharge through breaks and sleep.

How can you make health and fitness choices you can sustain for a lifetime? What benefits will this lifestyle change bring?

Read on to learn what lifestyle decisions make lasting change and how they can positively impact not just your longevity but the lives of those around you.

Health, Fitness, and a Sustainable Lifestyle

Diets and workout challenges generally have a temporary life span. To make sustainable healthy life choices, you must take steps you can pursue consistently.

But first, you must assess your current fitness level and then develop fitness goals. For your fitness level, note your waistline, body mass index, and how far you can reach your toes while seated on the floor with your legs in front of you.

Other things to list are the number of pushups you can do consecutively and how long it takes to walk a mile. Also, record your pulse rate before and immediately after finishing a one-mile walk.

You will need to identify your immediate needs for your fitness goals, such as losing weight or building a stronger core to ease back pain. Later, you can adjust your goals to suit your current fitness level.

The following steps can help you start implementing your goals.

Go for Workouts That You Love

Picking a workout routine that interests you will motivate you to follow your exercise plan. Even a low-intensity workout done consistently will reap good results.

Start Slow Before Working It Up

Results don’t happen overnight. Begin at a pace that matches your fitness level. You can increase the level of difficulty every few weeks at a time to challenge yourself. Just remember that you’re doing this for the long haul. 

Weave in Activity Throughout Your Day

You can schedule short but more frequent aerobic sessions at different times of your day if you cannot perform a single half-hour session. 

Incorporate exercises into your routine. For instance, go for a walk during your work break or listen to your favorite podcast while using the treadmill. 

Eat Nutrient-Rich Food 

Ditch processed food and prepare your snacks and meals so that, as they say, you can eat the rainbow. Dietitians say that brightly colored greens and fruits contain the highest nutrients.

Try New Things

Alternate activities that work out different parts of the body. You can try walking one day, then do strength training or swimming on other days. Changing routines can reduce the chances of overusing specific muscles or body areas.

Take Breaks and Get Enough Sleep

Sleep specialists suggest scheduling your exercise one to two hours before bed to allow your body temperature to go down and your brain to relax, facilitating sleepiness.

Moreover, remember to take the necessary rest periods within your workout time to avoid injuries and exhaustion.

Cultivate a Grateful Mindset

Fill your mind with inspirational thoughts and count your blessings. Surround yourself with positive people.

Be Accountable to Someone

Seek a workout partner with similar goals who can keep you accountable and motivate you to push harder.

Benefits of a Healthy Lifestyle

Suppose your fitness journey began from ground zero or with a sedentary lifestyle. In that case, the following benefits are likely the opposite of what your life used to be when you were still “inactive”.

  • You have better quality sleep.

Sleeplessness can be a sign of inadequate exercise. A National Sleep Foundation poll showed that only 56% of respondents who didn’t do any exercise said they slept soundly. 

However, 76 to 83% of survey participants who did some exercise reported having good quality sleep.

  • You don’t feel fatigued as quickly.

Exercise releases endorphins, which are both natural mood boosters and pain relievers.

  • Your joints don’t feel stiff.

Aging and prolonged sitting can leave your joints and lower back feeling achy. 

Exercise replenishes the lubrication of your joint’s cartilage and increases your bone strength, improving your flexibility and balance.

Physical activity also delays the onset of the arthritic-related disability and eases arthritic pain if you’re already experiencing it.

  • You experience better digestion and don’t have constipation.

Even simple walking can improve your metabolism and increase activity in your gut, which aids in creating fecal matter and its exit from the body.

  • You improve your focus.

Working out also buffs up your brain, improving memory, learning, and concentration. According to neuroscientist Wendy Suzuki, the benefits of a 30-minute exercise can last for two hours. 

  • You widen your social circle. 

You learn to trust others and stay accountable when you exercise with a training partner or group. You can build new friendships or strengthen existing ones by joining a walking group or group classes.

Photo by Anupam Mahapatra on Unsplash