Physical activity is important. People of all ages who are generally inactive can improve their health and well-being by becoming active with moderate intensity on a regular basis. However, when one changes their level of activity, consult a health-care provider for individual considerations and/or restrictions.
Here are some tips and simple changes to help you get started:
•Buddy up! Find a friend to lock arms with. Together, you can support each other and hold one another accountable to stay on track toward your goals.
•It starts at the grocery store! Do the majority of your shopping around the perimeter of the store; that’s where the good stuff is! The middle is mostly filled with processed, unhealthy items. If it has an expiration date in 2017 or later, skip it! Oh, and be sure your belly is well fed before shopping to help you maintain self-control!
•Breakfast: the most important meal of the day. This is not just a cliché! Breakfast should be a healthy mix of protein and whole grains and weigh in at about 300 calories. A couple simple examples are whole grain toast with natural peanut butter and a piece of fruit, or a couple eggs with toast and apple butter. A protein meal shake is also an option as a quick meal on the go when your morning is busy.
•Nix nighttime eating! Cutting out after-dinner snacking is an easy way to help shed extra pounds. It’s easy to consume a meal’s worth of calories while watching TV or other relaxing activity. Try drinking decaffeinated tea or hot water with lemon while you relax instead of snacking.
•Keep track! Thanks to smartphones, it’s easier than ever to keep a detailed food log no matter where your day takes you. A few good app options are Calorific, The Eatery, Evernote, Lose It, My Fitness Pal, My Food Diary, My Net Diary, My Plate, and Nutrition Menu. Most of these apps have a database of tens of thousands of foods, including many popular restaurant menu items.
•Get moving! Ditch the all-or-nothing attitude. You don’t need to spend hours working out or force yourself into grueling activities you hate. A little exercise is better than nothing. Adding just a modest amount of physical activity to your weekly routine can have a profound effect on your mental and emotional health, as well as your physical health!
These are just a few small changes you can make to work toward