Living a healthy lifestyle is not easy.
It can be made to look easy, that’s for sure. There’s advice at every corner about diet, exercise and how to shed pounds, but it doesn’t always feel relevant. After all, it’s simple to say ‘eat more fruit and veg’, but it’s not always that straightforward, is it? You may find great value in our recent article ‘Organic and Natural Diet Tips for Healthy Life’, but it may all feel alien to you. If you’re not used to preparing meals with vegetables, it means learning a new skill.
Similarly, if you’re told to run more or get to the gym, the advice is sound, but is it practical? The cost-of-living crisis makes a gym expensive, and perhaps you’ve barely run a mile in your life. You won’t lose weight by going at these things half-heartedly, but you won’t be able to push yourself hard without some guidance.
We’ve put together four really basic tips to help get you started, none of which are particularly innovative. Instead, they’re practical tips from a normal person who weighed too much, ate badly and wanted to change. They’re essential tips anyone can gain value from and perhaps shed a few pounds by adhering to.
Have a Routine
One of the key elements of making your fitness drive successful is to have a routine. Following a program like the Couch to 5K is a good idea. It ensures you exercise regularly, but at a rate that suits you, rather than a personal trainer. Regular exercise is one half of the fitness battle, and it’s easy to find excuses not to go running. However, if you’re sticking to a plan, it is also easier to find some motivation.
This applies to eating as well. The NHS website explains how you should always eat breakfast, for example, as it will stop you from snacking in between meals. Having a meal routine will add some structure to the other fundamental of losing weight, diet.
It might sound obvious to say eating right is a healthy choice, but you don’t need a fad diet to help drive you to eat right. The first thing to do is analyse what you eat and cut out the obvious bad things. For instance, you might like a dessert after a meal; deep down, you know that’s something to cut out. The first step to a better diet is identifying bad habits, according to an Insider piece, and that’s true.
Think about sugary drinks, cheese and dairy, and even bread. All are packed with calories, and getting fit is about cutting out the excess calories. Changing your eating routine is tough at first, but you don’t need to live like a monk; you can find alternatives. If you like a bacon sandwich with four rounds of bread and fatty bacon, maybe drop to two rounds, and use low-fat medallions instead? Eating right is far easier than you might think and can be achieved with common sense.
Don’t Obsess Over the Scales
Getting into shape isn’t always about weight; some doctors believe that the traditionally accepted BMI method of measuring fitness is becoming outdated. As SymptonFind suggests, a person may have a high BMI for reasons other than obesity, such as increased muscle mass. That is especially true for those who have started exercising; you may lose weight but gain muscle mass. It would help if you stayed off the scales daily, as not losing weight can be seen as a failure, whilst it is a gradual process. Our advice is to be weighed no more than once a week, even once a fortnight, if you must be weighed at all. If you can judge your shape by your clothes fit, that’s a far better barometer.
Remaining focused is the key. Exercise isn’t always easy, so try to have music playing or something to help distract you at first. With the diet, it’s ok every so often to think you can have a luxury, and you can, but don’t make it a regular thing. Some people set a goal of one takeaway per month, and if that’s the case, just make sure you’re doing the right things every other day.
Also Read: 8 Super Foods That Are Amazing For Your Skin
One final great way to stay focused is to share your experiences on social media. Talk about your exercise and what you’re achieving because you’ll get validation from your friends and followers. Of course, when times get hard, you will have created a certain expectation, which can help drive you forward; you might be happy letting yourself down, but could you do the same to everyone you’ve announced your intentions to?