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10 Ways to Stay Fit and Healthy Even When You’re Busy

10 Ways to Stay Fit and Healthy Even When You’re Busy

Today’s world just seems to get busier and busier. Most of the time it probably feels like you’re just jumping from the treadmill of work onto, well, a real treadmill! How are you ever supposed to keep up a healthy lifestyle without running yourself into the ground.

Well, I have good news! Getting healthy and fit doesn’t have to be a big project. Most of the changes you should make can be super small, everyday things. Try my tips below to get started!

1. Eat Healthy

These days there seem to be new health food trends every day, from kale shakes to acai berry supplements, but it’s really the basics that are the most important. First, just focus on getting the right amount of fruit, vegetables, and proteins on a daily basis.

A great way to do this is by preparing meals in advance for the week. That way, you’re not adding cooking a fancy, healthy meal to your to do list every day on top of a full day of work!

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2. Get Your Nutrients

Even if you think you’re eating pretty healthily, sometimes you might be missing out on important nutrients without even realizing it. Things like zinc, iron and other vitamins that are really important for your energy levels. To make sure you’re getting enough, try taking a multivitamin. They’re pretty cheap and you can even get them as gummies if, like me, you don’t like pills.

3. Hydrate

Did you ever learn in school about how we’re all 90% water? Well, that probably explains why it is so important for you to drink you 8 glasses (or more!) of water a day. If you’re busy and might not remember to walk to the water cooler every hour, just fill up a water bottle to keep at your desk. It’s convenient, good for the environment and it might keep you from reaching for that unhealthy soda, too!

4. Exercise Regularly

You may feel like your schedule is too jam-packed for you to fit in a regular exercise routine, but you’d be surprised how easy it can be! Even adding as little as 15 or 20 minutes of moderate exercise to your daily activities can boost your energy levels and lower your risk of a number of health conditions.

There are even exercises you can do at your desk or at home while you watch TV! This way you can feel good about yourself and get that great endorphin rush without having to spend a grueling hour at the gym watching other people sweat.

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5. Sleep Well

Sleep is hugely important to your overall health. According to a recent survey 50 to 70 million Americans suffer from a sleep disorder. Even if you are super busy, it is worth making room for a full night’s rest. But getting the right number of hours alone won’t do it, you also need to be getting quality sleep. This means sleeping through the night, not tossing, turning and getting up ten times during the night to jot down notes on your to-do list for tomorrow!

If you have trouble falling asleep, consider a white noise machine, an eye mask, or upgrading your mattress to make sure you are as comfortable as possible. Just think, you could be waking up in the morning and actually feeling rested! With that kind of good start to the day, tackling a crazy schedule becomes way less stressful.

6. Prioritize

You’d better suck it up and admit it right now—you aren’t Superman. That’s right, you can’t do everything. So take a good hard look at all of the work you’re putting on that never-ending to-do list of yours and figure out what is really important.

Do you really need to repaint your dresser this weekend? I doubt it. Put it at the bottom of the list! What about fixing the layout for that presentation you have on Monday. Can your assistant do it? Great—delegate! By cutting your to-do list down to the essentials, you can make more room for healthy behaviors (you know, like breathing!).

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7. Limit Energy Supplements

While it’s easy to rely on energy drinks or coffee on top of coffee to get you through a busy day, that habit is a real problem for your health. Energy drinks or excess caffeine may make you feel ready to conquer the world for an hour or so after you’ve taken them, but you’re sure to slump later in the day and feel even worse than you would have otherwise.

Thankfully, healthy habits should restore your energy so you don’t have to rely on extras like energy drinks anymore.

8. De-stress

For some people that’s yoga, for others it’s curling up with a good book. Me, I like to go to the park with my dog. Whatever it is that helps you de-stress, build time for it into your schedule. It may seem like a waste at first, but by giving yourself time to relax you are actually lowering your stress levels, which makes your body healthier and your mind less frazzled. Trust me, you’ll get way more done this way than just by powering through your stressful day with no break in sight!

9. Maintain Your Support Network

Friends and family aren’t just for fun and games—they are really important for your mental, emotional, and even your physical health! People with strong support networks are better at overcoming setbacks and problems in their lives.

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It makes sense, because having someone to talk to when life is tough just makes everything seem so much more doable. So don’t feel like grabbing coffee with a friend or taking a long weekend to go back home to visit your folks is being unproductive. Actually, taking little actions like those regularly makes sure your support network is strong and will be ready for you if times do get tough. That’s right, you have to go grab some drinks with your friends—for your health!

10. Take A Step Back

Is this really life and death? Are you in the middle of saving the planet or being elected Supreme Ruler of the Universe? If not, get some perspective. More likely than not, in the grand scheme of things, your to-do list isn’t really that important. What is important for your life in the long haul? Your health! You’ve only got the one body, so think about that whenever you start to lose track of your health and fitness goals.

Remember, when it comes to health and fitness, take it one day at a time. You won’t become the queen of healthy cooking or an ace marathon runner right off the bat. That’s ok. Every time you make a healthy choice, give yourself a pat on the back. You’re moving in the right direction, and that’s progress worth celebrating!

Featured photo credit: pixabay.com via pixabay.com

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Last Updated on May 22, 2019

10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

There are lots of studies that show if you do some exercise in the morning, you will be in a better mood all day long. You will have more energy and you will certainly be a better colleague, friend or partner.

One psychologist at Duke University has researched the effects of exercise on depressed patients and he has come to the conclusion that exercise has a definite role in treating this condition and has an important role in preventing people from relapsing.[1] According to the New York Times, scientists have now established that exercise also boosts your brain power.[2]

In addition, there are studies from the Appalachian State University which show that blood pressure can be reduced by doing regular morning exercise.[3]

Here are 10 simple morning exercises that will help you feel great the whole day long. You can include some of them in your morning exercise routine or do them all at home without having to enrol in a gym. Consult your doctor before starting any form of exercise routine if you are new to this.

1. Cat Camel Stretch

Stretching exercises are useful for muscle toning and also preventing arthritis. They can either be dynamic or static.

Dynamic ones such as the cat camel stretch, are particularly useful for doing other exercises in the morning. They are also beneficial at other times of the day, especially after long periods of sedentary work. This one is great for spinal flexibility and is a good warm up exercise.

Kneel down on all fours. Start by rounding your back just like a camel so that your head will try to meet your pelvis. This is the camel position. Then lower and lift your head so that your lower back is arched. This is the cat position. Do these movements slowly and smoothly. About 4 or 5 times.

Here’s a video to guide you through:

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2. Go for a Walk or a Run

This is better done outside so that you can connect with nature but running inside on a treadmill is almost as good. You can time yourself and increase length and time according to your fitness program.

Always have new goals to reach. Start with brisk walking and work up to running. At my age, I am still walking!

The health benefits are considerable. You can build stronger bones and you can help to maintain your weight.

Also, you are helping your heart to stay healthy and keeping your blood pressure low.

Learn more about the benefits of running here: 8 Benefits of Running 5 Minutes Every Day You Didn’t Know

3. Jumping Jacks

Michelle Obama is a great fan of this exercise and has become “Jumper in Chief.”[4] They are great for cardiovascular health and also for toning muscles especially the calves and the deltoids.

Stand with feet together. Jump while spreading your arms and legs. Return to first position and keep going! You can start with doing these for 1 minute and then gradually build up to the number you are comfortable with. Here’s how:

4. Abductor Side Lifts

Watch the video below to see how to do this exercise. These muscles are important because you use them everyday to run, get into the car or onto and off a bicycle. They are very important also for your core stability and prevent the pelvis from tilting.[5]

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Do about 10 to 15 raises for each side like this:

5. Balancing Table Pose

This is a classic yoga pose. It benefits the spine, balance, memory and concentration.

Start with the table pose (hands and knees). Breathe in before starting each movement. As you exhale, raise your left leg parallel to the floor as you raise the right arm, also parallel to the floor. Breathe in as you lower arm and leg. Repeat for the other side. 10 repetitions on each side is a good starting point.

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    6. Leg Squats

    Not just legs are involved but also hips and knees.

    Stand with your feet a bit further out from your hips. Arms are out in front of you. Then lower yourself as if you wanted to sit down until you reach a 90 degree angle. You can go down further if you want to. Then return to the starting position. Repeat 15 times for 2 sets for beginners.

    The benefits are that these exercises help with knee stability and can benefit the leg muscles such as quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.[6]

    7. Push Ups

    You start lying down (face down) but with your body held up at arm’s length. Your hands should be in line with your shoulders. Breathe in as you lower your body. That is fairly easy. Now, as you exhale, you have to get back up to the starting position.

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    An easier version to start with is to bend your legs at the knees so you do not have to lift your whole body.

    Beginners may take up to a month to be able to do 100 push ups so you will have to start with a very small number and gradually increase it.

    This exercise is great for strengthening the chest, shoulders and the triceps. It is a great strengthening exercise for many muscle groups. In fact, most muscles from the toes to the shoulders are being used.

    8. Bicycle Crunches

    There are numerous crunch exercises targeting the abs. The bicycle crunch is a variation where you work more muscle groups. Aim for 15 to 20 reps to start off with.

    Watch the video to see how this is done correctly:

    9. Lunges

    Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Place your hand on your hips. Take one giant step forward with the right leg. Make sure the knee does not go too far forward, that is, past your toes. The left knee will go down to almost floor level. Alternate the legs as you go on.

    Try to do a set of between 8 and 12 reps for each leg. It is important to allow for a day of rest, so this exercise should be done on alternate days, especially if you are using weights.

    This exercise is great for strengthening and toning the quadriceps, glutes and hamstrings.

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    10. Bicep Curls

    You can do this sitting down so if you spend a lot of time on the phone, this is a great exercise to do.

    Choose suitable dumbbells or another household object that you can easily hold. Sit down with the dumbbell in your hand. You need to sit forward a bit so that your triceps can lean on your thigh to give you support.

    Then bring the weighted arm up to shoulder length and then down again. Exhale as you lift the weight and inhale as you lower it.

    Here’re some important notes before you start doing this exercise:

    Try to do one or two sets of about ten repetitions for each arm and then switch arms.

    These exercises are really useful for toning the arm muscles.[7] In addition, they can strengthen and tone the brachioradialis muscle located in the forearm. These are the muscles we use to pick up things when we flex the arm at the elbow so we use these muscles countless times a day.

    You may have to build in a rest day for the heavier exercises, numbers 6–10. On the rest days, you can do gentler stretching exercises and also some walking or running.

    Morning exercise is not only a great mood booster, but will help you keep your weight down and also sleep better![8] Start including one or some of these exercises in your morning routine!

    More Articles About Exercises for Beginners

    Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

    Reference

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