It’s about that time of the year again where the subtle pressure of getting into shape starts to creep up on you. It could be all of the ads for new summer clothes. Or maybe it is time to check in on the health goals you set at the beginning of the year. Whatever the case, there is no denying how stressful swimsuit season can be.
With both internal and external expectations, you might be tempted to take shortcuts. This includes everything from extreme gym habits to fad diets. However, it goes without saying that these quick fixes do more harm than good. So let’s take a look at what could possibly go wrong and how to get on a healthy road to your beach body dreams.
The Lengths We Go to and How They Hurt Us
Many of us have gone down pretty questionable roads in pursuit of the “ideal” body. What we don’t realize or sometimes choose to ignore is how these decisions impact our health in the long run. Let’s further explore this topic to help put things into perspective.
The Dark Side of Workout Culture
Movement and exercise are key ingredients in the recipe for a healthy life. But, like anything else, it can reach extremes and can begin to do more harm than good. Especially when the goal is a quick fix and fast results.
As a matter of fact, going too hard too often can result in workout-related injuries. It could be as simple as bruising and weight-lifting blisters or as serious as muscle sprains and joint instability. These problems usually occur as a result of excessive working out without proper build-up in terms of capacity and capabilities. Going from 0 to 100 overnight is simply not possible.
Yo-yo Diets and Yo-yo Results
As tempting as they may be, fad diets are not doing us any good when it comes to lasting results. You have probably come across several in your lifetime. Some with crazy plans that have you surviving on cabbage water to more legit-sounding ones.
Typically these fad diets deliver the weight loss promised by following a strict regime and that weight is temporarily gone. But, what happens when the fad diet ends? That’s when the yo-yo effect happens and the weight begins to come back on. While this can be for a number of reasons, it typically has to do with metabolism. These yo-yo diets more often than not send the body into survival mode where the immediate response is to slow down the breakdown of calories. So while you might be essentially starving yourself in a bid to fit into those shorts or bathing suits, your body is figuring out how to minimize expenditure. And the moment you step off your diet bandwagon and actually get some food into your body, it will be in no hurry to let it go.
Health and Fitness Are a Journey, Not a Destination
As tempting as the quick fix is, we all need a friendly reminder from time to time that health and fitness are a journey rather than a destination. When it comes down to it, lasting results occur when you incorporate healthy habits into your daily life. And, here are five sustainable habits you can adopt today!
- Build your foundation. We know that we can’t go from 0 to 100 when it comes to working out. So, start where you are and build upon that. What can you commit to at least 5 days a week? Maybe it’s 10 minutes of walking, maybe it’s a 15 minute HIIT workout, or maybe it’s 45 minutes of yoga. Choose movements you enjoy and a duration you can commit to and build up on that.
- Focus on fruits and veggies. Forget the “can’t have” list that comes with most diets. Rather, focus on adding foods that nourish your body like a variety of fruits, vegetables and whole foods. There are hundreds of delicious recipes to try and new foods to explore.
- Ditch the self-trash talk. What would you say to your friend if he/or she were trying to lose weight? Would it be positive or negative? That’s a rhetorical question because we know that you would be nothing but supportive and full of encouraging words. The same should hold true for you and your wellness journey. Ditch the negative self talk that isn’t serving you and replace it with positive and encouraging thoughts. Everytime you go to think something negative, kick that thought to the curb and replace it with something positive.
- Make mental health a priority. While we are on the topic of feelings and affirmation, part of a sustainable healthy lifestyle is working on your mental health. You have probably noticed that it’s when you are stressed or anxious that counterproductive habits like missing workouts or binge eating start to creep in. So find ways to relieve stress and nurture your mental health. You could try meditation, prayer, yoga, and the list goes on.
- Support your gut. Your gut is the gateway to your whole body. It’s the truth. When it’s operating correctly, it plays a major role in so many of your body’s basic functions including mental clarity, immune function, nutrient absorption, your ability to lose weight and more. As a matter of fact, your gut is so important that we created an entire program to help support it. The 30 Day Gut Reboot, a family of daily behaviors that support a healthy gut and a healthy body.
Live the #NewEarthLife
The bottom line, health is a journey and one that should be enjoyed. It’s through our daily actions and behaviors that we shape our health and wellness. So go ahead, focus on wellness one day at a time and live what we call the #NewEarthLife. At New Earth we are on a mission to positively impact the health of every body and soul we come in contact with. We specialize in producing third-party certified, organic whole food supplements that feature a rare, yet highly, nutritious superfood, Aphanizomenon flos-aquae (AFA). Also known as organic Wild Microalgae®, AFA is a unique type of blue-green algae that is available in many forms including algae tablets, algae pills, and algae powders all designed to help you on your journey to holistic wellness. Visit our website to learn more.