Five Things We Must Do for Health and Happiness-Part I

imageWouldn’t it be nice if by implementing just five habits all our problems would be solved? Unfortunately, this article ain’t that.

However, I wanted to boil down, if only for myself, practices that are multi-taskers or just can’t be avoided in improving or maintaining a good life.

This first article focuses on physical habits while the following article deals with inner practices.

This is definitely not a complete list but I think you’ll agree they should at least be part of the top 10! And here we go….

Eat More Vegetables Than Anything Else

http://www.stretchngrow4kids.com/files/MasterImages/vegetable-face.jpg
http://www.stretchngrow4kids.com/files/MasterImages/vegetable-face.jpg

Holy eggplant, there are a lot of opinions out there on the best way to eat. However, most agree that eating a primarily plant based diet is the way to go. Generally, vegetables have the highest amount of nutrients per calorie plus, being a whole food, have the added benefit of fiber and probably other good-for-us stuff we haven’t even discovered yet. They help keep us regular (ew! yes, but that is actually a thing), don’t spike blood sugar, and give great skin and shining eyes. It’s up to individuals to choose to pair them with meat, lots or little fat, grains or whatever; just have vegetables cover the largest portion of your plate.

http://cdn.marketplaceimages.windowsphone.com/v8/images/45740500-4bd2-4b9d-8e80-75ec073f1ce9?imageType=ws_icon_large
http://cdn.marketplaceimages.windowsphone.com/v8/images/45740500-4bd2-4b9d-8e80-75ec073f1ce9?imageType=ws_icon_large

Find a Physical Activity You Enjoy and Do It
Everybody from yogis to POPSUGAR agree that movement really is the bees knees. The most well known benefit is a better physique but it also improves brain function (improved blood oxygen delivery and waste removal), relieves stress (releases feel-good serotonin), strengthens the heart and bones, increases metabolism, improves balance, flexibility, and blood sugar and most importantly makes your skin glow!
Personally, exercise is my Achilles heel.
I dislike sweating.
I dislike the stupid instructor egging me on.
I enjoy sitting on my derrière.
*Sigh*
So, anyway…Yay exercise!
The solution is to personalize it. One doesn’t have to join a barre or crossfit class, unless it speaks to you. If you enjoy rockin’ Richard Simmons or tearing through the backyard brush or toting your golf bag to the eighteenth green, do it! The thing is to do it almost every day and, though it pains me to say it, some exertion is required. If the heart rarely beats much faster than normal, the above awesome benefits will be correspondingly less awesome.
Listening to podcasts while walking is truly enjoyable to me. If the weather is bad, I do one of 50 million workouts of every description on YouTube. Incorporating steep hills, brief jogging or a short, intense video occasionally through the week (true confession: one of these saved vids is five minutes long; still counts!) gets my heart pumping without making the experience less enjoyable. Whatever works for you; CONSISTENCY is key!
(Remember to share the love with push-ups, planks, and squats, too!)

But wait there’s more! Stay tuned for Part 2 coming soon.

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