Are You Looking for a Healthy, Balanced Life?


by Michael Corthell

Many people have trouble sticking with their good, healthy habits because they don’t follow a morning routine or don't have 'system' for doing them. It's easy to forget about a new routine when your day is full. Fortunately, I have a simple solution to this problem.

If you start following a simple routine every morning, you’ll create a short ritual. You will complete a number of small good habits that will set you up for creating an organized day. Step by step. I call it a routine/routine.

Following a system when you first wake up, means that you’ll have more time to think in a quiet atmosphere and it gives you the opportunity to be organized for the rest of the day. This daily 'habit routine' helps you create energy and the right mindset to take on the work of a busy day.

Before you start going through this menu  please remember that getting up early is a habit that almost all successful people follow. As Benjamin Franklin famously said, ''Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, happy and wise.''

Many of these actions may seem to be common sense but when you try to combine a few of these steps, on more of a routine basis, you may be surprised to see how big of an impact these good habits will have on your life.



''The hardest part of changing is the decision to do the changing.''
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Social


If you want new friends…
  • Make a conscious effort to smile.
  • Make eye contact with someone new.
  • Introduce yourself to someone new.
  • Ask open-ended questions about this new person’s preferences.
  • Talk about common ground issues.
  • Find a way to laugh together. Tell a joke, make a self-deprecating statement or engage in an activity that makes you both laugh. Laughter is bonding.


If you want to find someone to date…
  • Invest an extra twenty minutes a day in personal hygiene. Don’t leave home without being showered and groomed.
  • Smile often.
  • Refuse to gripe, complain or talk about anything negative.
  • Relax. Roll your shoulders, sit up straight and open your stance. Uncross your arms and let your palms rest open, facing up. All of this sends the vibe that you are confident and approachable.
  • Establish and maintain eye contact. Hold the other person’s gaze longer than you usually would, but not so long as to stare.

If you want to be a better lover…
  • Prolong foreplay by at least five minutes beyond what you think is expected.
  • Pay attention to how your lover is responding.
  • Hold off on eating anything substantial in the two hours before you expect to make love. If you must eat in that time frame, keep it light and easy to digest.
  • Engage in prolonged eye contact.
  • Set up a sensual environmental. Clean up the bedroom; light candles.
  • Get in touch with your playful side. Laugh; relax; have fun.
Fitness


If you want to lose some weight…
  • Become a VEGAN.
  • Eat six small, healthful meals a day to keep satisfied and on track.
  • Eat that first meal within 30 minutes of waking up (to jump start your metabolism.)
  • Move your body for ten minutes or longer first thing in the morning. A brisk dog walk or ten minutes of an exercise video is a perfect way to increase your metabolism.  Basically, any type of walking plan can have a positive impact on your health.
  • Work out for a total of an hour a day, five days a week. If you can break that up into two workouts, you will benefit even more (since you will create two spikes in metabolism that day.)
  • Drink a glass of water before each meal.  (Here are 3 of the best water filter pitchers to help you do this.)
  • Fill your plate with vegetables and lean meat; use fat, grains, starch and sugary foods as condiments.
  • Replace something white (starch, processed foods) with something green, orange, red or brown (vegetables, protein, lentils) at every meal.
  • Try a new physical activity (rock climbing, whitewater rafting, yoga, dance class.)
  • Walk your dog (or a neighbor’s dog,
  • Park in the furthest parking spot.

If you want to gain muscle and tone up…
  • Make protein the focus of every meal.
  • Perform a set number of squats every morning before work. Increase the number of squats every week.
  • Perform a set number of pushups every morning before work. Increase the number of pushups every week.
  • Lift a set number of weights each morning before your shower.

If you are new to fitness and want to get in shape…
  • Commit to an easy form of exercise each day. Increase time spent exercising by five minutes a day until you reach your goal of how long you want to work out daily.
  • Write down your exercise goal and actual achievements each day. Increase the intensity of your workouts slowly.
  • Take your pulse while exercising. Calculate out your exercise heart rate so you know what zone to shoot for while exercising, and stay in the recommended zone.
  • Pay attention to how you feel while exercising. Push yourself to the point where it’s tough, but not miserable, each day.
  • Schedule exercise like you would appointments.
Health Goals



If you want to get to sleep faster…
  • Do not drink alcohol; instead drink a cup of herbal tea in that hour before bed.
  • Exercise, but not within two hours of bedtime.
  • Go to sleep at the same time each night.
  • Wake up at the same time every morning (including weekends and holidays.)
  • Dim the lights in that half hour before bed.
  • Take three to five milligrams of melatonin a half hour before bed.
  • Do not drink caffeine after 2:00 p.m.
  • Deliberately visualize something pleasant and calming as you relax in bed.
  • Snuggle (with a person or pet) – the rhythmic breathing of another living being will help you relax.
  • Tense up all of your muscles, and then relax them, repeatedly, until you feel completely relaxed.
AND to sleep soundly all night…
  • Lower the temperature in your bedroom and use a heavy blanket for warmth.
  • Cover (or move) all LED lights in the room.
  • Turn on a sound machine (ocean, rain, white noise) for the night.
  • Meditate, pray or journal for ten minutes as part of your nightly bedtime routine.
  • Keep daily activities out of the bedroom; retire to the bedroom a half hour before bed, using the bedroom for sleeping and bed-related activities.
If you want to eat more healthfully…
  • Become a VEGAN
  • Plan your meals ahead of time.
  • Pack (from home) what you need to eat for each day.
  • Eat one piece of fruit or one serving of raw vegetables (carrots, celery, cucumbers) mid morning and mid afternoon.
  • Don’t carry money for vending machines. Instead eat a snack you brought from home. Pretend vending machines don’t exist.
  • Pack a healthy snack for the ride home from work. Pretend fast food restaurants don’t exist.
  • Split restaurant meals in half. Take half home for later, and only eat half of the meal in the restaurant.
  • Ask a friend or coworker to split meals with you when eating out.
  • Order meals off the healthy section of the menu. Tell yourself you cannot eat anything on the menu that isn’t listed as healthful.
  • Order a child-sized or senior-sized meal off the menu.
If you want to drink healthier beverages…
  • Add a slice of lemon or lime to your water.
  • Replace soda with seltzer water.
  • Replace cold sugar-sweetened drinks with iced herbal teas or iced coffee (sans cream and sugar.)
  • Replace high fat hot drinks with flavorful hot tea or flavored coffee.
  • Replace regular juice with low sugar juices or flavored seltzer waters.
  • Avoid cream and sugar.
If you want to rev up your metabolism…
  • Drink a glass of (unsweetened) green tea three times a day.
  • Exercise vigorously for ten minutes each morning before work.
  • Eat within 30 minutes of waking up.
  • Eat six small meals throughout the day.
  • Sprinkle cayenne pepper or cinnamon on foods and beverages.
  • Add ice to cold drinks.
  • Exercise in the cold.


If you want to live longer…
  • Floss every night before bed.
  • Walk for a half hour every day.
  • Hug someone every day.
  • Eat something live (fresh fruit or vegetables) every day.
  • Try a new healthy recipe every day.
If you want to lower your chances of getting cancer…
  • Fill your plate with fresh, colorful vegetables one meal per day.
  • Drink green tea every day.
  • Make it a point to avoid smoke (including second hand smoke.) This may mean you ask a roommate to smoke outside or you decide it’s time to quit smoking.
  • Stop eating fried food.


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Plant Based Nutrition: Julieanna Hever

Julieanna Hever, also known as The Plant-Based Dietitian, is a passionate advocate of the miracles associated with following a whole food, plant-based diet-the established effects of which provide positive healthful benefits. http://plantbaseddietitian.com

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