I have news for you. There is no such thing as perfection when it comes to our bodies. We all have flaws and that’s what makes us so unique. Images of hard bodies, skinny bodies, and ripped muscles plastered all over social media has given us a false sense of what healthy really represents.
Don’t you have those days when you say, ‘I wish I could look like her’ or ‘if only I could fit into those jeans again’, I would be so much happier. It’s one thing to be thin and fit but it’s another thing to be healthy. So what’s the difference?
There are many components to health so let’s break it down:
First of all, our health refers to all the physical systems in the human body including the nervous system, digestion system, our heart, as well as our social and mental well-being.
Fitness refers to one performing a physical activity from walking to running marathons. You can exercise on a regular basis and still not be healthy. Fitness doesn’t imply health. It can help contribute to a person’s overall health but it’s not a guarantee that they are healthy.
Nutrition also plays a role in being healthy. You can workout, look fit, be skinny, but it doesn’t imply that you are healthy and if you don’t eat healthy, you can still remain unhealthy.
Mindset controls how we feel and how our bodies feel. If you are constantly thinking negatively, then those emotions can carry over into your physical being and make you sick. There are many techniques to change the way you think and feel such as positive thinking, eliminate negative self-talk, meditation, yoga, journaling, and many more.
One of the biggest stereotypes is that if you are fit and thin, you are healthy. Our body weight and body fat measurements are not an accurate reading of overall health. Components such as fitness, clean eating, positive mindset, stress levels are all important factors that make up our total health.
So how do we become healthy? First of all, lose the mindset that you have to be an elite athlete and hit the gym 7 days a week to be a size 0. It’s not realistic for most of the population and I can honestly tell you that I don’t have a lot of time in the day to workout. However, I’m smart with my workouts meaning that I use my time well to my advantage to reach my fitness goals. I do however, have time to work on all of the following health components to be the best damn healthiest person I can be:
1. Eat clean (no animal products, no processed food, no refined sugar)
2. Drink water – the 8 glasses/day is a guideline only. If you feel thirsty then drink some water.
3. Exercise (30-60 minutes a day) – wait, this doesn’t mean that you have to go to the gym every day. If you follow my blogs, there are many ways of getting active outside of the gym. Try these blogs for ideas:
4. Get a good night of sleep (7-8 hours)
5. De-stress – this is a tough one for many but I’ve learned to use tools like journaling and talking to others to help de-stress.
6. Meditate – there are many different ways to mediate but it’s helped me deal better with different situations and help balance me.
7. Limit alcohol and no smoking
8. Environmental factors – reducing chemicals in the household and outside.
We can’t control what we see on social media or in magazines, but we can control how we want to visualize our health looking like. I’ve seen many people who are skinny, workout daily, but have chronic diseases and conditions due to their lifestyle and eating habits. I have trained many clients who take my advice of healthy eating and changing their mindset and these are the people who change their lives. Then, there are those clients who don’t take my advice, and struggle to be happy with their life. The key to health is not just being fit. Continue to workout but try to adapt all the above components into your daily life. Don’t let all the items overwhelm you, but instead gratify you. If you think that you don’t have enough time to do all of this, then your health isn’t that important to you, instead change the way you think. Change your story and you will change your life. Think of your life in these terms;
-how great your body is going to feel when you omit all of the bad food from your eating habits,
-when you take time to de-stress everyday and you don’t feel so anxious,
-when you get enough sleep so you feel rested and not tired throughout the day,
-quit smoking & limit your alcohol consumption so you reduce risk factors of chronic diseases,
-live in the moment and appreciate what you have in your life instead of thinking what you don’t have.
Just imagine how healthy you are going to be when you make all of these changes. If your goal is to get to a certain weight or certain size, that’s fine, but don’t let those numbers define your overall health.
So forget the ‘skinny’ and think bigger with HEALTH!
Until next time, take care of yourself.
Art & Maureen