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Include Regular Exercise As Part of Your Healthy Lifestyle

Jul 11, 2008
If you want to live better, for a longer time, you need to take good care of yourself. Part of your plan to good health should include regular exercise, along with eating well and getting enough sleep.

Exercise Regularly

Our bodies are meant to be in motion, not sitting at rest. Whether you make a point of taking a brisk walk several times a week, work out at the gym, or spend time participating in a team sport like basketball, there are many advantages to getting (and staying) fit. Even if you live where the weather prevents outdoor activities, indoor basketball hoops or yoga classes offer great options.

Instead of exercise making you feel tired, you will feel more energized. (OK, this won't happen the first day!) However, you will start to carry yourself straighter and your outlook on life will be more positive. It doesn't take hours and hours of physical activity to get these benefits from exercise; if you can make a point of being physically active for 30 minutes, three times a week, you will start seeing a difference in how you feel very quickly.

Eat Well for Health

In conjunction with getting up off the couch a lot more often, you will want to eat a balanced diet. If you want to improve your health, it may be tempting to decide that certain foods are "bad" and that they should be off limits forever. This is not the best approach to take to eating and nutrition.

When you decide to ban some types of food from your diet, you just set yourself up to start craving that food. Sooner or later (since you are only human after all), you are going to give in to it. When you do, you are more likely to eat a large portion of whatever it is that you have been craving and then you may be tempted to abandon your efforts to eat well altogether because you think you have completely blown it.

This is not true. Food is just food. It's not good, bad, or indifferent. As long as you choose to eat well most of the time, the rest will work itself out. Be sure to include fruits and vegetables, dairy products, grains, and protein in your diet every day. You can treat yourself every now and then, too. You may find that as you start to take better care of yourself that foods with a lot of fat and/or sugar are not as appealing as they once were.

Get Enough Sleep

Many people are chronically sleep-deprived and are constantly operating on less than all cylinders because of it. If you want to perform your best at school, at work, at the gym, or on the basketball court, then you need to give your body time to rest and repair itself after an active day.

When you don't get enough rest, you are less alert and more likely to make mistakes or even have an accident. Decide that you are worth caring for properly and give your body what it needs: regular exercise, a healthy diet, and enough sleep.
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