5 Simple Steps to Sustainable Health
I believe in one simple premise: the only way to be healthy is by changing your lifestyle. I know it might sound vague or too simplistic but that's because it's easier to do than you think. Do you want to find out why and how to change your life? Well, I made it simple for you to achieve sustainable health in five simple steps.
1. Redefine the way you think about health
I know some things seem easier said than done, but this one comes first because it really is that important. Ready? Let go of the beliefs that health equals being of a certain weight, having a specific physique or looking one set way. Instead, try thinking of what your body is capable of and what you can accomplish if you set your mind to it.
Setting training goals is one way to think about it; many people want to be able to run a 5K or lift heavier weights, for others it may be simply moving more every day. Your health does not always have to tie into fitness; it is also about your mental health and feeling good in your own body and mind.
So if certain physical activities make you feel better, find a way to fit them into your schedule, even if it’s for 10 minutes every day! If eating healthier foods makes you feel good, probably not only physically but mentally as well, treat yourself to a delicious and healthy homemade meal as often as the time permits. This way, you’ll slowly start to establish healthy routines, which is the key to stick to new habits. Doing these little things for yourself can have a huge impact on your mood and overall well-being, not to mention your health, of course!
2. Focus on the long-term
While considering what it is that makes you feel better but also happier, it might be tough to find that one thing that really hits the spot for you. For some, it may be as obvious as going to the gym and training with the use of various machines and/or weights. For others it could be working out at home, starting to bike instead of taking the bus, taking up a team sport, implementing long and relaxing walks into your daily routine, or even consuming less sugar and opting for water instead.
Whatever habit you want to change or implement, ultimately it all leads to establishing specific goals – and hopefully, that goal is to feel better in your own body. Physical changes may come along the way and that’s to be expected but the journey is so much more fulfilling if that isn’t your only focus. Your goal can also be as specific as you want it to be but the point is to think of routines and habits that you can imagine yourself doing one, two or five years from now. Having this perspective makes it less challenging to stick to new routines. If you happen to slip, you know that it doesn’t set you back and that you can get back on track easily and with enthusiasm because you’re making changes for the right reasons.
3. Start with small, clear goals.
The best way to make lasting change is by starting slowly with a clear goal in mind. Having a purpose will not only guide you but will also motivate you. If you begin with more than you can tackle, the feeling of disappointment can often lead you to not believe in yourself. An easy way to avoid this is to set many small and clear goals. By completing each one of them, you will gradually feel more confident in your ability to reach your ultimate goal of healthy living. Try thinking of your goals as tiny milestones that are there to help you and guide you through the journey. Like I mentioned before, set small goals and plenty of them! Accomplishing each one should make you feel very proud of yourself and give you more energy and motivation to complete the next ones!
4. Surround yourself with like-minded people
Do you know how there are so many exercise and diet programs that are group-based or recommend you to find a buddy to work out with? Well, there’s a reason for that. It’s certainly easier to stick to a new routine if the effort is group based or if you know there are certain people you can turn to and depend on for motivation when needed.
Another way of looking at this is simply considering the people you spend time with. Quite obviously, if you’re trying to live healthier but your closest friends and family eat a lot of junk food, have a sedentary lifestyle or aren’t very supportive of you becoming healthier, it can feel impossible to make any changes to your life. That’s why it’s so important not to have one sports or diet buddy but a whole group of friends as well as your family who at least understand, accept and support what you’re doing. Encouraging them to join you in your health efforts is another thing worth considering, even if it’s not a necessity.
5. Enjoy what you do
When you enjoy what you do, you’re more likely to stick to it – it’s as simple as that. This is why I strongly encourage you to make your journey toward a healthier you a fun one! It may take a few tries, many different habits, some of which might stick and others not, but as long as you persist, have a clear reason for what you’re doing and remind yourself of it, you are bound to succeed!
Which of these steps do you think will be most helpful for you in your wellness journey? Comment below.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Hi there, I’m Mel – a foodie, fitness enthusiast, dreamer and nature lover. Some time ago I took it upon myself to improve my own health and now I want to help YOU do the same so you can become happier and healthier!
I went through my fair share of ups and downs when it comes to nutrition, exercise, motivation and (lack of) positive thinking. It took me some time and it definitely wasn’t easy to change my mindset to a healthier one but once I got there, it got progressively easier to start implementing better habits into my daily life and I got out of the negative cycle I seemed to have been stuck in.
Basically, what helped me was hearing encouraging and positive words from others, which is what I hope will help you as well. I try my best to write posts in which I address important and useful topics and to share recipes that are delicious and easy to make.
I am not a dietitian, nutritionist, personal trainer, coach or any other certified health professional – that is to say, all the information and advice provided on this blog comes from what I’ve learned and experienced personally. I’m here to help to the best of my abilities. And if you have any questions, ask away, really, ALL questions are welcome!
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