Updated: Jul 18
It is natural for people who wants to be physically healthy and fit. Achieving a healthy weight and fit physique is a journey and people who lose excess weight gradually and steadily are more successful at keeping it off. Many will either embark on diet routine or exercise excessively. But either one, exercise or diet; they are only part of the weight loss story.
The goal may seem large, see it as a journey rather than being too fixated to the final destination. You will learn new eating habits and discover new physical activities that best suit your body. These habits will help you live a healthier lifestyle and may help you create sustainability in better lifestyle, healthier weight over time. It is important to include the mind, body and emotional health when it comes to curating a healthier you, and here are some tips to spark off ideas to get you started;
1) Manage your stress level.
It may be surprising to some of us, but mental and emotional stress do translate to our physical body, it also affects our sleep. Lacked of rest together with high stress level can lead to an increase in cortisol (stress hormone) levels. Higher cortisol levels can cause people to put on weight especially around their bellies.
2) Adopt sustainable changes that work for your lifestyle.
It is important to have a holistic routine when it comes to sustaining healthy weight. Do things that suits your body rather than following into some fad fitness or fad diet programs. Make changes that are sustainable and holistic.
3) Be mindful with food.
Practice mindful eating, there is no necessity to be labelled to any specific diet. It is essential to eat balanced meals, eat real food over processed food, choose a healthier cooking method and eat the right portion size. Being more mindful about food can have significant effect to your state of well-being and help you keep the weight off in the long run.
4) What about carbohydrates?
When it comes to losing weight, most will start to ditch their carbohydrates. But many researches show that carbohydrates are essential nutrients for brain function and prevention against neurodegeneration diseases. Nonetheless, it is important to understand that carbs are not all created equal, and so you want to avoid processed carbs that are high in sugar and white flour. Whole food carbs are healthy. On the other hand, refined carbs make the body unhappy. So, carbohydrates are great when healthier choices are made.
5) The right type of exercise routine
Exercise pays off in the long run by keeping those excess weight off but what kind of exercise is suitable? While cardiovascular exercises (aerobic exercises) condition the lungs and heart, they also help to burn calories. Resistance and weight training exercises (anaerobic exercises) have benefits that go beyond just helping to lose weight. It helps increase strength, tone and build muscles which increase metabolic rate leading to burning more fats round the clock – even when you are at rest. Resistance and weight training exercise is the key to burning fat at rest. Stretching is often left out in many routines but they are actually very important in maintaining flexibility, suppleness and tensegrity of the muscles to keep them strong, lengthened and prevent injury. So, the body actually needs a holistic routine of aerobic, anaerobic and stretching exercises.
6) Be nice to yourself.
Having that said, always remember to be grateful and express gratitude for little things in life. Gratefulness manifest into positive vibes which makes people happier and hence healthier too. It is also important to allow indulgence in moderation. Do not deprive your body from any foods and get plentiful of rest.
The journey to achieving a healthy body and lifestyle can be hard, it takes commitment. And sustainability is even more challenging with so much information that is available everywhere. Combining both the right exercise routine together with healthy eating habits will help you create sustainability. When unsure, exercise with a professional coach and always be mindful of food that makes the body feels good. Listen to your body and choose real food over processed food. Indulge in moderation, avoid processed food. Create a healthy habit, not restrictions.