This is a collaborative post
Healthy living can sometimes seem complicated and an impossible task. There are so many things that you need to do that it can make your head spin. If you were to follow all the advice you receive, you’d never have time to do anything else.
Living healthfully, though, isn’t actually as demanding as you might think. Yes, you will need to make a few modifications to your lifestyle, but nowhere near as many as you imagine.
In this post, we take a look at how you can simplify your approach to healthy living, free up your time, and still enjoy all the benefits.
Focus On The Cornerstones Of Health
There are three cornerstones of healthy living: sleep, movement and what you put in your mouth. Everything else is an added bonus. If you can master these three, you’ll find that they all reinforce each other, giving you more energy every day.
Sleep, for instance, helps to regulate your appetite. The type of food you eat determines your willingness to exercise. And the more exercise you do, the better you’re able to regulate your body clock.
It’s a good idea to set some rules for sleep. If you have a family, get the kids to go to bed at a certain time, so that they get the full 9 to 10 hours that they need, and you get a full 8.
Maintain high food standards too. This can be the most difficult to maintain, but should be a priority. Focus on eating whole foods. Try to avoid anything processed that comes out of a packet.
Lastly, move more – something we discuss below.
Keep Food In The Freezer
Freezing food can be a lifesaver. Instead of preparing meals fresh every day, it lets you grab meals on the run and incorporate them into your schedule.
You can make a batch of meals at the weekend and then put them in the freezer. You can also freeze fresh vegetables if you are worried about them going out of date and then put them into smoothies or use them for recipes later.
When you put food in the freezer, label the boxes so you know what they contain. If you are smart, you can create a food schedule, rotating the boxes so that you get a different meal every day.
Automate Your Subscriptions
Don’t waste time ordering your food, supplements and medicines from scratch every time you need them. Instead, automate the process. Sign up for subscriptions and set up direct debits.
You can also save time by using the internet. Buying the contraceptive pill online, for instance, is considerably quicker than getting it from a regular pharmacy.
If you don’t have a veg box subscription yet, get one.
Include Exercise In Your Daily Routine
Going to the gym is too much effort for most people. You have to get changed, travel there, work out, shower, and then get changed back again. The whole enterprise takes a minimum of two hours, even if you only train for 30 minutes.
For this reason, you should look for ways to incorporate exercise into your daily routine somehow. Perhaps the simplest way is to walk or cycle to work. You could also choose a more physically-active job, such as fitness instructor, or use any office gym facilities your company might have.
If going to the gym feels forced to you, it won’t be sustainable. You’ll stick it out for a month or so, and then eventually give up.
Tailor Movement To The Seasons
You don’t have to do the same exercise routine year-round. Instead, you can tailor it to the season. This way, you can enjoy outdoor summer activities when the weather is warm, and then train indoors when temperatures fall again.
Mixing things up like this offers numerous benefits. For instance, it makes training considerably more enjoyable. You’re not doing the same thing all the time. Instead, you’re moving from one activity to another, trying different things.
It also helps you create a more well-rounded type of fitness. Doing a mix of strength training, cardio and stretching all have independent benefits for the body.
Allow Yourself To Have Downtime
In the West, we believe that we need to be constantly on the go. Every day, we should be moving closer to our goals.
Sometimes, though, it’s nice to take some time out from this way of thinking. Downtime is where you release yourself from the burden of purpose and simply just enjoy your experiences as they happen. Find space for downtime at least once per week.