A healthy and balanced life can be very simple to attain. All you need are a few guidelines; you can fill in the details with your own preferences. It's easy to start a program, but hard to make lifestyle changes stick over time, and the key to persisting with any healthy lifestyle is balance. Whether you want to eat more organic food, start exercising daily or just master a new hobby, an inspiration board can help you figure out those goals and fine tune what makes you tick so that you stay focused on getting your health together.
Dangers of Dieting
The world of diets can be confusing and misleading. Everyone is trying to sell a different scheme, all for the purpose of separating you from your hard-earned money. The worst thing about diets is that they can be unhealthy, especially because everyone’s body is different. The answer is to simply go back to the basics. Opt for healthy options that give your body more energy.
The human body was designed to move, so move it. This doesn't suggest that a person needs to run for 10 miles every day or lift weights for hours on end. Just get outside and do the things you like to do. Whether it’s gardening or biking, if it makes you happy: go for it! Take a walk in the park with a friend. Plant a garden in the backyard. Play some tennis a couple of times a week. Find an active hobby that you love to do and stick with it. Excessive exercise has not been shown to improve longevity; it only increases the odds of getting injured.
Friends and Family
Stress is one of the most contributory factors to aging and poor health. Assuming your family is a source of enjoyment and comfort, spend more time with them! Play games, take trips, and engage in any other activities that are enjoyable for everyone involved. Friends can be even better; after all, we didn't choose our parents, siblings, cousins, etc. Spend time with friends that really add happiness to your life.
Don't Ignore Your Mind
We've already covered friends, family, and hobbies, but consider doing something specific for your sense of well-being on a regular basis. This might be attending church on a regular basis. For others, it might be a yoga class or time spent in meditation. Don't ignore this aspect of a healthy and balanced life.
Having a healthy and balanced mind and body does not require an extreme diet or an extreme exercise program. Take care of the basics and fill in the details with your own preferences. You already know what foods are healthy. You already know what people and activities contribute to your sense of well-being. Take a few steps today and build on them.
An inspiration board that focuses on your goals can help keep you on track! Here's my example board, which highlights my goals of 1) enjoying exercise outdoors, 2) protecting myself from UV rays, 3) stretch, and 4) healthy eating.
Part of my own initiative to live a healthier lifestyle is to take better care of my body. As I get older I’m learning better ways to protect myself from harmful UV rays, unlike when I was younger and would sunbathe with baby oil. Yikes! Problem is, I love the sun: to compromise, I bought a pair of sunglasses that protects against UVA & UVB rays (similar to the one pictured from Style Bop) to help shield my eyes. Wearing sunglasses can help prevent sun damage to your eyes that could cause cataracts.
From my work experience, I’ve learned that anytime you’re increasing your physical activity, it’s important to stretch your muscles to lengthen and strengthen them. Simple yoga poses are simple stretches that can be done in the comfort of your own home. There are a lot of great resources on the internet for beginner yoga (www.DoYogaWithMe.com has great free yoga videos, searchable by yoga type, length of video, and difficulty! ~Marilyn).
The biggest change in creating a healthy balance is improving what we eat. Smoothies make for an easy on-the-go breakfast for those hectic mornings trying to get the family out the door. Smoothies are great because of their versatility: customize the ingredients you use to meet your taste buds or whatever supplies are in the refrigerator. It’s important to remember that your body needs nutritious foods as fuel for when you exercise.
Let your creativity flow! The visual boards can also assist in planning baby showers, birthday parties, and maybe even your next vacation. What would your Fitspiration board look like?
photo credit: Protein Smoothie| Fruit Skewers | Sunglasses| Golf Course | Beach Yoga