It would be nice if our health would just look after itself, but alas, that’s just not the case. If we want to be our healthiest best, then we need to work for it. And there are many good reasons why you should do so. Investing in your health will give you more energy, will boost your physical conditioning, and will in all likelihood make you happier, too — after all, your physical and mental well-being are closely intertwined.
The good news is that becoming the healthiest version of yourself isn’t as difficult as you might think it is. If you can tick some key boxes, then you’ll be giving yourself the best chance of pushing your health forward. Wondering what boxes you need to tick? We’ve helpfully outlined them below.
Find an Activity
You might prefer the thought of spending long days on the couch, but if you want to be healthy, then you’ll need to work up a sweat from time to time. There’s a reason why so many people spend time in the gym! But don’t worry if you can’t face getting a gym membership; there are plenty of other ways that you can work up a sweat. For instance, you could take up outdoor jogging, cycling, hiking, or a sport. It’ll be best if you enjoy doing whatever you choose so that you’re more likely to do it.
As with spending time on the couch, you might also prefer if you could just eat takeout meals all the time. But nope, if you do that, then you’ll be much more likely to be unhealthy — those takeout dishes are rarely healthy! So be sure to pick up a few healthy recipes that you can make at home. This won’t just help you to be healthier, but it’ll also be good for your bank balance. Many people avoid cooking at home because they think it’s too time-consuming or complicated, but that’s not the case; this 1-hour recipe for instant pot pork stew will have you eating well without taking up that much of your time. So long as you have a selection of healthy recipes to draw upon, you’ll always be able to eat something that’s good for you.
In many cases, it’s not what you do that’ll improve your health, but what you don’t do. For instance, you can’t expect to snack on sugary sweets or drink soda all day, and expect to be at your healthiest best. Of course, no one’s perfect, and it’s OK to have things that aren’t great for you from time to time. But in general, it’s best to avoid them, or at least keep your consumption to a minimum. It’s a good idea to look critically at your diet/lifestyle and see where you need to make improvements — it could be that you’re drinking too much alcohol or using cigarettes, for example. Whatever it is, learn how to say no, and your body will thank you.
We mentioned early how it’s a good idea to find an activity that really allows you to work up a sweat. But it’s also important to find ways to build in some extra movement into your regular life. After all, going for a long bike ride once a week won’t be all that effective if you’re staying sedentary the rest of the time. Many people spend too much time throughout the day sitting down, so if you’re one of them, look for ways to add some extra movement to your lifestyle. For example, you may go for a brisk walk at multiple points throughout the day, or invest in a standing desk.
Invest in Sleep
Your body needs to rest to be at its healthiest best, and that means getting the right amount of sleep. Poor sleep has been linked with a whole host of medical issues, including an increased risk of heart disease and diabetes. Plus, if you don’t sleep well, you’ll be less likely to spend time in the gym or to make a healthy meal. If you’ve historically struggled with sleep, then look at making some changes. Meditation, upgrading your bed, and avoiding screen time before sleeping can all help you to sleep better.
Make it a Priority
Ultimately, the best way to improve your health is to make it a priority. It doesn’t take all that much to improve your health, but you will need to put in some effort! Treat it importantly, and you’ll have the right mindset.