3 Steps to a Healthier Lifestyle
Maintaining an exercise program or meeting a weight loss goal is rarely easy. It comes with hard work and discipline, as well as knowing where to start.
I often tell my patients at Methodist Physicians Clinic Regency that keeping three key things in mind can help them on their way to a healthy lifestyle.
1. Shop smart
Maintaining a healthy diet starts with knowing what foods to put in your body to provide the proper fuel. A trip to the grocery store can be daunting if you don’t know what that looks like.
I often recommend to patients that they shop the outside edges of the grocery store. That’s where most of the healthy and fresh foods are. Fruits and vegetables, seafood, meats, eggs and dairy are often found along the outside walls of the store. Eating those fresher foods gives your body fuel and energy to perform.
Fatty and heavily processed foods are generally in the middle of the store and the center aisles. If you want to avoid temptation, steer clear.
2. Be active
Exercising doesn’t mean you have to start training for a triathlon. You just need to get your heart pumping and work up a little sweat. Start slow and work your way up to about 30 to 60 minutes of moderate exercise five or six days a week.
Some exercise ideas:
- Walking the dog or with a significant other
- Playing with your kids at the park
- Going for a bike ride
- Jogging on a treadmill
For the best overall workout plan, alternate days of aerobic training with strength training, such as lifting weights.
I recommend talking with your primary care provider before you start any exercise regimen – whether with a personal trainer or on your own – to make sure your heart is healthy enough for physical activity.
3. Find a friend
To be successful with any lifestyle change, find like-minded people who have the same motivation. It could be a significant other, a friend or a co-worker. Having someone to exercise with, help keep your diet in check and shares your motivation can help keep you on track.
For more great ideas on maintaining a healthy lifestyle, speak with your Methodist Physicians Clinic health care provider.