Govern Your Exercise

Everybody wants to live a healthy, fuller life. Oftentimes, however, the quest for better health becomes a hunt for the latest miracle cures and diet fads – the loftier their promise, the bigger their audience. These quick fixes usually provide underwhelming results and endless frustration. Yet there is one method that has been tried and tested to work: good old fashioned exercise. Even a little bit of effort can yield enormous benefits if practiced regularly. Habitual exercisers enjoy the following:

1. Enhanced strength and fitness.

Resistance training taxes the muscles. This forces them to grow as an adaptation to the stimuli. People gradually develop greater strength over time. After a few months, those who initially had difficulty lifting a light set of weights find themselves picking up heavier variants with ease. This carries over to real life as work duties that previously seemed so hard get completed trouble-free, house chores start to feel effortless, and some even begin to dream of athletic pursuits.

2. Increased vigor and happiness.

Exercise encourages the production of endorphins. These are chemicals that interact with the brain, causing it to reduce its perception of pain while promoting a feeling of euphoria. This leads to the phenomenon called exercise“runner’s high” wherein individuals are filled with positive emotions after their physical exertion. Stress levels are also reduced and depression is held at bay. Working out increases self-esteem and improves body image. Vitality shoots up so there is more energy left at the end of the day to spend quality time with the family.

3. Effective weight management.

The body needs a certain amount of calories to function that is primarily based on age, gender, weight, and level of activity. A disciplined approach to healthy eating takes care of the input while working out allows a person to burn off any excesses. This balanced method is ideal for individuals who are trying to either lose weight or bulk up. Relying on diet alone is a difficult proposition that is typically unsustainable. Increased physical activity makes weight control more manageable while enhancing muscle tone.

4. Bone loss prevention.

Old age tends to coincide with insidious bone loss. Osteoporosis is particularly common among women but men experience this as well. Culprits include a sedentary lifestyle and poor nutrition. Decreased bone density makes affected persons prone to fractures and other injuries. Some forms of exercise can reverse this process. If done in the correct intensity, they can be sufficient to stimulate bone development anew.

5. A healthier heart and longer life.

Heart ailments affect millions of people around the globe. They cause tremendous anxiety to both the patients and their family. They also drain limited resources for repeated checkups, costly medications, dangerous operations, and related hospital bills. Exercise can prevent the onset of heart problems by boosting cardiovascular fitness. It can also significantly reduce the chances of developing Type 2 diabetes, breast cancer, colon cancer, and other common diseases.

With all these exercise benefits, shouldn’t it be part of your regular routine?

Keys to Good Health

Dieting and Watching What You Eat

Thousands of diet tips abound over the Internet, some offering contradictory and even harmful advice. While some of these might actually be credible, you have to remember that there is no single fixed formula, no be all and end all diet plan. Since there are so many factors to take into account such as current body weight and average physical activity, what works for one may not work for another. For this reason, it is best to consult a dietitian regarding the best diet plan for you.

Generally speaking though, many health experts still recommend following the most basic diet formula which is the food pyramid. Vegetables, especially the fiber-rich and leafy varieties, should make up most of your meals, although starchy vegetables like potatoes are eaten in moderation. Meats are eaten for their protein content. Lean meats are best because they have lower fat content. Additionally, frying is discouraged and should be keysubstituted for other cooking methods like baking or steaming. Finally, breads, rice and grain are consumed for their carbohydrates which are converted to energy, but should be eaten sparingly.

Keeping a food diary is an effective way to keep track of what you’ve already eaten, and is useful for cutting down on those extra calories. This helps you observe and analyze your eating patterns as well, in order to correct unhealthy eating habits. Furthermore, cheat days are encouraged as a break, usually once every week, to allow yourself to indulge occasionally. Studies show that this also helps psychologically, as people who have cheat days are less likely to engage in binge eating behavior.

Working Out

You don’t have to be a gym rat or have premium (and expensive) gym membership in order to stay fit and healthy, although having an instructor to target your problem areas is a great help. There are lots of home workout DVDs available that you can use which actually produce results as long as you follow the workout routine. Having workout buddies to exercise with can also make the experience more enjoyable while providing you the motivation you need to keep going. If you are very heavy and not used to exercising, start with light walking.
You can begin with 5-10 minutes a day and then gradually increase the time and distance.

 

Having the Right Mindset

Too often, people give up on their journey towards healthy living before even taking the first step. They always come up with excuses like not having enough time or money, and end up accomplishing absolutely nothing. Truly healthy people, aside from being physically fit, also always keep a positive attitude. This kind of optimism permeates every aspect of your life: your physical well-being, your career, and your relationships. The road to good health begins with the mind, and if you believe that you can do it, then you will. Keep on, keeping on. Once you start you see improvement,  you will be motivated to continue.

Governing Your Diet

It is important that you govern your diet, since health and wellness directly affects your quality of life for the better.  A well thought out and balanced diet is one of the most potent natural remedies against diseases and ill-health. One popularly practiced dietary option is a no carb diet. Vegetarianism is another.

Diets And Weight Loss

More times than not, when we think of a diet, we think of weight loss or management. Maintaining a healthy weight helps you balance your body and maintain optimum health. Both vegetarianism and no carb diets provide you with options that lead toward both outcomes. Both diets are also fairly easy to implement as the rules healthy dietgoverning what should and should not be eaten on a regular basis are pretty straightforward. Of course, sticking to these rules can be easier said than done. This is true of any lifestyle change that may be in stark contrast to existing habits.

No Carb Diet

No carb diets will see you staying away from foods rich in carbohydrates. Carbohydrates breaks down to sugar which become stored energy if not used by the body. The average person can do well to at the very least cut down on foods rich in carbs, as most of us don’t need the extra energy, due to being fairly sedentary. Complex carbohydrates, and those rich in fiber, as is the case for many vegetables and fruits are usually allowed. Simple carbohydrates and processed foods are usually a no go though. Lean proteins, vegetables and fruits (although these do have carbs), and drinking lots of water are recommended.

Vegetarianism

As for vegetarianism, some of the same rules for no carb diets apply. One of the main difference of course would be the protein source. While there are different classifications of vegetarians, with some being more extreme than others, the main thing is to consume more plant based versus animal based protein sources. Plant based sources include, peas and beans and soy, among others. Some more liberal vegetarian plans will allow for fish or chicken.

Stay away from pork and beef entirely.  If you feel that you need animal protein, eggs are probably the best. Buy cage-free eggs if at all possible. If you need more substantial animal protein, eat broiled chicken or fish once in a while.  After a year or two, you should be able to eliminate chicken and fish entirely.

Becoming a vegan is much more challenging and should be undertaken with caution.  When one eats some dairy product such as milk, cheese, and yogurt, it is easy to get various vitamins and plenty of protein.  With a vegan diet, one must be mindful of getting enough vitamins, minerals and protein. It can be done, though if you feel it will be beneficial and you are dedicated to doing it.

Parting Shots

Eat the best food you can but there a some other tips to consider. Make sure you eat a good balance of the types of food you consume.  If you are having difficulty eliminating, try eating more fruits and salads.  If you are getting too “loose”, so to speak.  Eat more nuts and cheese, etc.  Also, try not to gorge yourself but eat a little less than you want.  Try to leave the table feeling slightly hungry and you will find that 30 minutes or so later, you feel full.  Eat lightly in the evening and try not to eat much a couple of hours before you retire.