I have been on a quest to find my path to a healthy balanced lifestyle again after the whirlwind that this last years has been, and I feel like I am making some great progress. I have joined an awesome gym full of motivating people and all the equipment and space I need to have great fun workouts. I have started cooking more, eating out less, etc
Is this what a healthy lifetsyle is? Having a gym membership and eating out less?
The conclusion I have come to is that no, this is definitely not what a healthy lifestyle is. There are so many other things that could be going on that can improve my lifestyle or make it unhealthy.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) defines a healthy lifestyle as "A healthy lifestyle is a way of living that lowers the risk of being seriously ill or dying early. Health is not only just about avoiding disease. It is also about physical, mental and social wellbeing."
WHAT MAKES A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE?
Growing up I did not really see the need for sleep and you'd often hear me say "sleep is for the weak", but I'll be honest I was young and stupid and had way too much energy! Sleep is a crucial part of recovering both physically and mentally, it can affect your hormones which can affect your ability to maintain a healthy weight. Sleep also affects your concentration during the day and motivation to get things done!
Emotional stress is behind many illnesses that we face. People are more likely to smoke, drink too much, work too hard, argue constantly, and so on when they are stressed. Taking care of your mental health and making sure you are equipped with the tools you need to manage your stress and feel more relaxed. Dealing with stress and mental health issues is tough and can be overwhelming. Please know there are people and professionals you can speak to if you are struggling to manage by yourself. It's okay to not be okay and it's okay to ask for help.
This links back to the previous point. Making time for yourself is a crucial part of taking care of yourself. It's easy to get carried away with the million and one things you have to do, but let me ask you this. What's more important than you? If you don't take care of you, you'll break down and then everything and everyone you take care of will break down too. So do whatever makes you happy, whether it's a massage, a bath, a workout, reading a book or just going on a walk make sure you take the time to do it.
Did you know you can have a gym membership and go everyday and still not be active? This is something I have been pondering on a lot lately. It's easy for me to say that I am active since I go to the gym everyday and workout for at least an hour. I have slowly realised that's not true. Working out for 1 hour and being sedentary for the rest of the day is not being active. Walk more during the day, take the stairs, get up and walk every hour, do some body weight exercises. It's the small little choices that will make you active and truly make a change.
Happy Healthy Living,