Fitness can be the foundation of a happy life. With the start of a new year, more people are turning to healthy living, devoting more of their energy to clean eating, exercise and drinking as much green juice as humanly possible.
It’s easy to feel a little intimidated.
The truth is, most people don’t have time to prepare organic smoothies from scratch, meticulous diet plans and carefully orchestrated workout routines. As a real estate professional, you know this better than most. With hectic schedules and unpredictable hours being a staple in the lives of many REALTORS®, it can be difficult to find time for all the fixings of a healthy lifestyle.
We’ve consulted with New Brunswick REALTOR®, salesperson and accomplished fitness competitor, Angela Squires, to bring you seven easy tips to help you achieve a healthier lifestyle.
1.Routine, routine, routine
“Being healthy both mentally and physically makes you feel good and gives you energy. My days can sometimes be long and unpredictable, so having a routine is key to following through with your fitness goals.”
The benefit of having a routine is something that can’t be overstated. It doesn’t have to mean rushing out the door to fit in a two-hour gym session every morning; it can be as simple as going for a quick lunchtime jog or doing a few pushups in the morning. It doesn’t matter if you’ve got an hour or five minutes, the important thing is that you do it consistently.
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2. Find the right workout for you
“Set goals and figure out what you’re trying to achieve, then find a regime you love and that’s right for you. When you enjoy your workouts, it’s much easier to make time for them, no matter how busy you are.”
Before embarking on your fitness journey, you need to ask yourself what it is you’re trying to achieve. Do you want to put on muscle, or are you just trying to lose that extra bit of winter insulation? Consider your ability and the time and resources you have available. The perfect workout is out there, you just need to keep trying until you find that magic combination of effectiveness and enjoyment.
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3. Choose the healthy option
“If you’re trying to commit to a healthier life, the best way to start is by making small changes to your daily habits. Choosing the healthy option, like walking or taking the stairs more, can lead to big changes in the long run.”
Small changes can speak volumes over time. Finding fitter options in your daily life helps you build and maintain a fitness baseline without requiring you to set time out of your busy schedule. Walking more is one of the best ways to do this. There are many different pedometers on the market today, such as the popular wearable fitness tracker Fitbit, but most smartphone can also track your steps. With one of these, you can see how active you are on a day-to-day basis and also challenge yourself with daily step goals. The Canadian government recommends a healthy adult receive approximately 150 minutes per week of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity, which translates into 30 minutes a day, or about 10,000 steps a day. Using one of these devices is a great way to hold yourself accountable to your fitness goals.
4. Make the most of your workouts
“When you’ve got a crazy schedule, try and make the most out of every workout.”
So, you’ve got your fitness tracker, found your perfect exercise and a great time to do it, what next? It’s time to step things up. Consider speeding up your workout with a little high intensity training, but don’t worry, it’s not as intimidating as it sounds. High intensity training is simply making the most out of the time you have available, which means stepping up the pace and cutting down on rest periods. Try out circuit training: a rapid succession of bodyweight exercises with minimal rest in between. This technique will help maximize productivity and help you build muscle and lose fat.
5. Sleep smart
“Don’t neglect your sleep! Having a good night’s rest is just as important as good diet and exercise.”
Now this one might seem obvious, but a remarkable amount of people go through their lives without considering the importance of being well rested. A good night’s sleep is the foundation of any healthy lifestyle. Emotional well-being and brain function aside, sleep also plays a significant role in controlling your waistline, according to some studies. Start prioritizing good sleep by establishing a schedule. Have a nighttime routine that conditions your body to prepare itself for sleep. Stay away from your phone or any blue-light source an hour before bedtime and try reading a book instead. This will require discipline at first, but after a short while, your body will adjust, and it will start to feel like an automatic process.
6. Eating better
“To make any progress, you have to eat better. Choose a healthy lunch instead of a drive-thru; never eat food that comes out of a window. Plan your meals and pack your lunches the day before, anything to keep you away from eating out.”
This idea can be a scary one. Most people, though they know it’s important, resist changing their eating habits, but it doesn’t have to be difficult. Start by substituting for the healthy option, like a diet soda over a regular one or a salad instead of fries. Eating well will help keep your energy levels up and manage your weight, among countless other things like mitigating heart disease. Pre-planning and preparing your meals might not be ideal for someone with a crowded schedule, but it ensures you’re treating your body with the respect it deserves. Stick to greens and limit carbs—both your wallet and waistline will thank you.
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7.Find a fitness pal
“Having a workout buddy helps make things fun and keeps you accountable to your goals.”
Everything is easier when you’ve got a friend to hold you accountable. Find a friend or colleague to join you on your fitness journey. Making any kind of lifestyle change can be daunting but having someone by your side will increase your chances of following through with your goal. Plan group workouts or have a group chat to keep them informed about your progress. It’s far more difficult to give up on a goal after you’ve told somebody about it.
Do you have any fitness suggestions of your own? Let us know in the Comments section below.