Leading a Healthy Lifestyle
A key component of the personal growth we all strive for is the ongoing desire to achieve and maintain excellence in one’s health.
Everyone’s body is different, and there are no hard and fast rules to ensure each individual reaches their own physical goals. However, below you will find 10 health and fitness guidelines that I adhere to, which you may find useful to keep in mind as you embark upon your journey to a healthy lifestyle.
1 | Feed Your Mind
My first point is arguably the most important of all: always remember that having a truly healthy body is impossible without also having a healthy mind. The Ancient Greek word for ‘gymnasium’ was actually defined as a place in which both physical and intellectual education takes place, which really says all you need to know about the unbreakable bond between mental and physiological health. For my further ruminations on this topic, read ‘The Power of the Mind’.
2 | Set Smart Goals
The establishment and pursuit of ‘SMART’ goals (targets which are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely) is a technique often used in business, but I have found that its application is just as appropriate when planning a personal health journey.
3 | Follow the Law of Energy
The ‘Law of Energy’, in the context of nutrition and exercise, states that fewer calories must be consumed than those expended by people looking to lose body fat, with the reverse being true for when muscle gain is desired. This is a simple yet effective rule – one I always live by.
4 | Stay hydrated
Everyone knows they should be drinking more water, but why is this the case? Here are a few of the specific benefits of hydration:
Aids fat loss
Improves skin elasticity
Improves muscle efficiency
Helps with digestion
Boosts the immune system
Water feeds life, and I encourage everyone to strive to improve their water intake.
5 | Start a meal plan
Depending on your specific health goals, your individual meal plan will vary in terms of calorie control, ingredients, and so on. Whatever your aim, though, keeping a strict record of what you eat – and when – will give you much greater control over your nutrition.
6 | Relax wisely
Rest and relaxation is of vital importance, but there is a difference between recharging your batteries and simply being idle. As I have already mentioned, all people are different; however, almost everyone would benefit more from exploring a new country than aimlessly channel surfing on their television.
7 | Don’t limit your exercise focus
It may be that your primary health goal is losing body fat, toning up, building up muscle, or increasing your stamina. Regardless of your objectives, though, you should never focus solely on one exercise at the expense of all others. Every aspect of your physical make-up requires care and attention.
8 | Monitor your progress
We all want to become the best possible versions of ourselves and keeping a physical record of your exercise achievements offers a tangible way of measuring your progress towards self-actualisation. On my YouTube channel, you will see several videos that track my progress pre-contest and during off season, you may choose to take photographs, or track your progress in a diary. Keep notes of what you do and how you are improving during your journey to self-improvement.
9 | Respect the importance of sleep
For busy, ambitious, and high-achieving people such as myself, sleep can often become the first casualty of a life lived to the full. However, the importance of sleep has not been exaggerated – from giving a fresher appearance to helping to maintain a leaner / more toned physique, there is little disputing the myriad benefits of getting your eight hours.
10 | Face your challenges together
Whilst feeling comfortable with your own abilities is a necessity for living a healthy life, it can also be beneficial to experience elements of your fitness journey with others. Whether through engaging the help of a personal trainer or simply exercising with friends, a problem that is shared is often halved.