10 Year Round Resolutions for a Healthier YOU
By Laura Kelly-Pifer
Resolutions. Do you make them? What kind do you make? Is it better health, to exercise more, to lose weight or quit a bad habit? Do you follow thru with them and if not, why? Unfortunately, many of us decide to tackle multiple things all at once and it begins to overwhelm us. Or sometimes we set really high goals that aren’t realistic. What If we decided to start now, not January 1, with small, consistent steps working towards those resolutions? I have a feeling that we would more than likely achieve our goals and maintain them.
Today I want to share 10 simple ways that you can create a healthier you. You’ll want to incorporate these into your daily routine.
1. Start your day with a morning stretch – A morning stretch is a great way to get oxygen and blood flowing to all your muscles and helps relieve any joint stiffness. This is a must for me.
2. Take a walk instead of a coffee break – Many of enjoy that second cup of coffee at work but what if we chose to walk the stairs, hallways or around the building instead? Just taking as little as 10 minutes of physical activity contributes to better cardiovascular fitness and blood flow to our brain. That means we we go back to work with a more fresh approach.
3. Laugh – I’m a firm believer that laughter is good for not only the soul but the body as well. Studies have shown that laughter may help reduce stress hormone levels and decrease sensitivity to pain. So go ahead and read a joke, watch a funny show or even laugh at yourself when you make a goof.
4. Choose apple slices over chips – If you’re like me, you enjoy the crunch of a good chip. But, overtime, those chips contribute to excess calories, increased waist lines and sometimes even clogged arteries. Choose apple slices instead of chips as your next meal. You’ll save on calories and will stay fuller longer. Apples also have more soluble fiber, the kind that helps lower blood glucose and cholesterol.
5. Practice deep breathing – You know those times during the day where you’re stressed out. Take time to breathe and regain control. Here’s what you need to do. Place your hand over your abdomen about two fingers above your belly button. In a seated position, your hand should move out when you inhale and in when you exhale. Breathe slowly, about 4 beats or each inhalation and another four for each exhalation. This will help keep your stress level at bay.
6. Replace one sugary drink a day – Sodas, juice drinks, sports drinks, energy drinks and other sugary drinks contribute to weight gain and add unnecessary calories as well as tooth decay. Choose unsweetened herbal teas, water, or light lemonades instead. Over time, replace more than one drink per day.
7. Phone a friend – Talking to others about what is going on in life is meaningful. It doesn’t have to be a long conversation but meaningful and enjoyable. Research have shown that people with strong social ties have healthier habits such as exercising more and not abusing alcohol for example.
8. Floss well every night – Flossing daily not only helps gum disease but may also protect your heart. Dr. Raymond Martin, a dentist and spokesperson for the Academy of General Dentistry says “The current theory is that bacteria in infected gums can come lose and enter your bloodstream.” In turn, the bacteria can irritate your arteries, contributing to the buildup of fatty deposits.
9. Set an electronic curfew – If you can, avoid the computer, television, the phone, etc and instead unwind with a hot bath, mediating or light reading. Do this an hour before bedtime.
10. Commit to a healthier you with regular exercise and healthier meals – Getting to the place of being ready to make a change in your life can be a difficult one. I’ve been there myself. Sometimes it can take years to finally make the decision that “it’s time” to put yourself first and take care of yourself. Perhaps you are a busy mom who is being pulled in a million different directions or maybe you are a full-time employee who can’t figure out how to carve out time for yourself. Or maybe you know what you are SUPPOSED to doing but need the support and encouragement to actually follow thru with your plan. Decide today to Commit to a healthier you! with regular exercise and healthier meals.
Wishing you good health!
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Laura Kelly-Pifer is a Fitness Coach who strives to help others by giving hope and support to those that are dissatisfied with their current situation. Whether you are lacking physically, emotionally, financially, or nutritionally she is here to help you see REAL RESULTS!