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Taking Pleasure Seriously

How to Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is the key to a happy life. Everyone already knows this, but very few people believe they can take the steps that will lead to an improvement in their lifestyle.

A healthy lifestyle begins first and foremost by creating a balanced life, not full of restrictions or a rigid daily routine that prohibits eating different food groups or making life much less enjoyable than it should be. When you adopt a healthy lifestyle, you discover that there is room for everything, and the only secret is in the balance.

My journey to a healthy lifestyle actually began only after my service in the Israeli army {yep, in Israel it’s mandatory for everyone to serve the army…}. Until the army my lifestyle was very well balanced – I grew up in a house where vegetables and fruit were the main ingredient in meals, I went to sleep early and got up early in the morning and although I never liked working out, I never sat for hours on end in front of screens. So, true, I used to eat junk food and candy here and there, but it really wasn’t the main ingredient in my diet. I was a very thin girl and I never felt the need to worry too much about what I was putting in my mouth or how much physical activity I needed to do.

And then came the army period.

Over the course of two years my lifestyle has changed dramatically. Not only were these two years tough for me, greatly affecting my mood and leading me to very low energy, but even the good nutrition that was rooted in me my whole life was very hurt.

Snacks, pizzas, sweetened drinks and instant meals were the foundations of my diet from the moment I realized that the army's food really wasn’t for me {and not just because of the taste, but mainly because I saw what was happening behind the scenes in the kitchen}. Of course, there’s also the classic issue of compensation and self-encouragement through the excessive eating of all those things. I felt neglected, depressed and my digestive system really wasn’t at its best, let's put it this way.

When I was discharged from the army, I felt completely alien to my body. It just wasn’t me.

I decided to take myself in my own hands and try to improve my lifestyle by adopting various diets. The strict diets obviously didn’t work and other diets I tried to adopt, like the raw food diet, as good as it was, didn’t last very long simply because it was too limiting. Sports, on the other hand, wasn’t in my lexicon at all, and although I tried to get workouts into my routine at that time, it only really started during my university studies {at least it finally happened! }.

It took some time until I understood that there wasn’t a single solution that suited everyone, which is exactly why there are diets that work on certain people and on others they really don’t. The balanced lifestyle I spoke about at the beginning is individual and different for everyone – but the general outlines that create a healthy lifestyle are the same for everyone: nutrition, exercise and rest.

If you’re dealing with excess weight, stress or just a general feeling that isn’t good, you should make some changes in your lifestyle. It can be a bit overwhelming at first, but like in many other areas of life it’s important to know that the first step is the hardest and from there it just gets better In this guide you will find tips that you should use to adopt a healthy and positive lifestyle.

[crp]

 

NUTRITION

As I’ve already said, there isn’t one menu that fits everyone. Each person has a preference for different types of food so that one predefined menu won’t be good for anyone. If you’ve tried different diets {and admit that you’ve tried…} you already know that it doesn’t last a long time, and it usually also brings more harm than good.

To maintain a healthy lifestyle, you should adopt a balanced diet based on the 80/20 rule. What this law actually says is that 80% of the foods we consume should be healthy {and there’s a very big difference between healthy and dietetic}, and the other 20% can be anything that makes you drool. Pizza, hamburger, ice cream – you name it girl! Think of it this way – it's like eating a big salad and sipping a little cocktail at lunch. Not so bad when you think of it like that, huh?

As I’ve already said, balance is the key word.

In this post, I listed the 7 eating habits that help me maintain a healthy weight easily, but here are some more tips worth adopting :

  • Never go shopping when you’re hungry so that you don’t end up buying the whole supermarket.
  • Try making a few new healthy recipes every week, which you can find on Pinterest, so you won’t fall into a boring routine.
  • Don’t eat standing by the counter / on the road / when you’re busy with something else.
  • Combine fruits or vegetables in each meal.
  • Eat less processed foods.
  • Make sure you always have a healthy snack in your bag when you leave the house.
  • Skip the fatty dressings and replace them with olive oil, mustard, honey and lemon.
  • Learn to say no – you don’t have to taste everything you see and you really don’t have to eat something because you don’t feel comfortable to refuse.

 

 

EXERCISE

I know that exercise isn’t the most fun thing in the world. As someone who really, really, really wants to get the bug that makes you addicted to sports and makes efforts to try to make it happen, I know that sports isn’t really most people’s cup of tea. Although every visit to the gym is accompanied by endless self-persuasion, I understand that this is something I must include in my routine in order to lead a healthy lifestyle. I can’t promise you that one day you'll like exercising, but from my experience I know that it's something you can turn into a habit. Yes, even if it’s a short physical activity for less than 20 minutes. Once you find the motivation to go out and exercise, and you’ll feel the wonderful sensation that spreads in your body after exercising, you’ll understand that this is something you must do for yourself.

I know that the gym isn’t suitable for everyone but there are many other options like dance classes, zumba, boxing, and  even dancing on a pole!

In addition, there are many ways to put exercise on the agenda without adding the gym or a class to your schedule – for example, skip the elevator and always use the stairs, park the car a little farther from the destination when you go to work or run errands {or alternatively, get off the bus one or two stops early}, move your body and clean the house a bit more or even stand more instead of sitting. These things may seem small and unimportant, but they end up accumulating

REST

Life can be an endless race that is accompanied by stress, pressure, negativity and fatigue, but they can also be much more beautiful and relaxed

Wait a minute, but how is it related to a healthy lifestyle, you ask? It’s very much related, no less than eating right and exercising.

I know that it really isn’t simple, and some will say it's even harder than exercising – after all, who has time to find a few moments of quiet, to rest and relax or even get into bed at a normal hour?

To be honest, everyone.

It's just a matter of priorities.

I learned the great importance of resting the hard way. I simply spent too many hours working and studying in front of the computer, I exaggerated, and as a result, I got an infection in my hand that almost completely kept me away from work for almost a month. At first I was very angry at my body – how dare my body betray me like that?! Then I realized that I was actually the one hurting my body, when my body gave me signs of fatigue and I just ignored them until it had to make me “pause”. Since then, I just take more breaks and work less hours and that's fine. True, I can’t always get everything done on my “to do” list, but my health is more important to me.

Here are a few things you can do to relax and rest a bit more :

  • Take a short break for a few minutes every half hour-hour when you work in order to stretch.
  • Stop working in the evening on the couch, or at least set a short and predefined time for this.
  • Set a reminder on your cell phone to remind you that it’s time to get into bed {so you can sleep at least 7 hours a night}.
  • Treat yourself once a week to a pampering bubble bath.
  • Watch an episode of a series you love.
  • Light scented candles, make yourself a hot drink and read a good book.
  • Just don’t forget to breathe deeply sometimes.

 

At the end, these three things – nutrition, exercise and rest – are interrelated and affect each other, so it’s important not to invest in just one area and neglect the other two. I hope this post has helped you and that you’ll be able to apply these tips to your routine. Bottom line – to adopt a healthy lifestyle, you simply need to change your attitude and make small steps towards the goal

Do you have other tips for maintaining a healthy lifestyle? Write to me in the comments!
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24 Responses

  1. Love this post! I’m 2 days from the end of The Whole30 myself and have learned a ton about what your body is trying to tell you. Keep up the great work! I’ll definitely be back.

  2. This reached me at the right time. I went thru phases where I practically settled for the a shitty version of myself, but that had to change. I’m currently under my metamorphosis… See you around soon!

  3. These are great tips to help jumpstart a healthy lifestyle! It’s great how you pointed out that a healthy lifestyle looks different for each person. I take pride in prioritizing my health by eating healthy and lightly exercising, but someone else may prefer working out more or choose to address their mental health! I have bookmarked your post and plan to share it on my channels for sure 🙂

    1. Thank you so much Mia! I was tried of people saying you have to do this or that to be healthy! always too many rules you can’t follow! It’s all about finding your balance 🙂

  4. I enjoyed reading your posts. Everyone wants to live a healthy life. In my personal opinion, exercise is one of the powerful tools to keep you fit and healthy. It improves your body posture and thinking skills. After doing exercises you feel more happy, relaxed and can easily concentrate on your goals.

  5. I am so much impressed by your blogpost as it has covered major things that are necessary to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Keep up the good work.

  6. Oh well, wonderful tips for the healthy lifestyle. In my opinion, I always like keeping up my workout routine and diet plan.

  7. Hey! This article has been very helpful and informative for me to make a plan and hopefully I will be able to work towards my goal .

  8. Loved your tips 🙂 I just started my own lifestyle blog to share all things I love. Wish me luck and you have a great Blog!

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