Would You Love To Know How To Not Only Live Longer But How To Live Better? How About How To Live With Increased Levels Of Vitality And Energy So That You’re Living As The Best Version Of You? Would You like A Step By Step Process To Help You Live Better?
Of course you would! But are you treating your body kindly? Are you fuelling it optimally to function at it’s best? Stop and think to yourself, do find that you are going from sitting in your car on the way to work, to sitting on a train or bus, to then sitting at your desk all day long and not doing at least 1 hour of dedicated exercise that day? And then doing this on repeat? Do you think that you getting in at least 150 minutes of physical activity every week? What food choices are you making throughout your busy day? Or are you just grabbing the fastest option possible without any concern for what that choice will do to your waistline?
We have all seen the advertisements on the television, at the bus stop on the windows with the “tick of approval” logo on foods in the supermarkets, but what does it take to actually have a healthy heart? Is it as simple as just eating those foods?
Your heart is the most vital organ in the body, without it functioning properly, a snowball effect of health problems will occur. With the rise of processed foods being more easily accessible, people sleeping less, a lot more jobs being sedentary, the risk of obesity and heart disease is at an all time high with no signs of slowing down.
People are eating more, sleeping less and moving less which is leading our generation down a scary path of obesity. There are even new terms coming out now to describe different health related conditions such as “abesity”.
Abesity describes those individual that may not display large amounts subcutaneous body fat or skin old measurements but that have large amounts of visceral fat around their vital organs.
What do I need to do to improve my heart health right away!?
To put it simply, an easy way towards a healthier heart is to eat more fresh foods, get an adequate amount of restorative sleep, increase your levels of incidental exercise and look for lifestyle changes that will contribute to better health and a moderate to vigorous physical activity regime everyday. Sounds like a lot? Just tackle one a time then…
Habit focus V’s Outcome focus
Developing new habits is the key to any longterm change. If you want a million dollars in your bank, your focus cannot be on the million dollars (the outcome). It needs to be on the daily habits that help you get the million dollars! Example would be saving $1,000.00 a week or studying the stock market for 2 hours a day so that you can then understand where to put your money so that it will multiply over time etc…
Develop the habits and the outcome will happen as a result of those habits. Often if you try to do it all at once too you will find that it all becomes too much and will cause you to feel overwhelmed and as a result you will throw it all in!
Below are my 4 week habit change process to living and feeling better. Focus on one change or habit at a time, each habit should be your only focus for the whole week (7 days) before you move to the next one.
Week 1 – Eating More Fresh Foods
This is one of the easiest habits to improve. It involves making better food choices and to eat unprocessed foods as much as possible.
Aim to eat a piece of fruit or a serving of vegetables with each meal, every day for 7 days. This will increase the amount of fibre you eat and the amount of phytonutrients, vitamins and antioxidants you’re eating. This will make your digestive system and your bodies cells very happy!
Identify first how many servings of vegetables you are having per day now? What other types can you introduce into your diet also? Variety is also the key, aim for lots of colours!
The more unprocessed the food, the more the body has to breakdown that food leading to more calories being burned! This is called the thermic effect of feeding (TEF).
Unprocessed foods are also lower in saturated fats and refined sugars and contain the good fats and fibre which lead to lower cholesterol levels and will reduce plaque build up in your arteries over time.
Week 2 – Incidental Exercise
This habit is a great way to also get you out of the house and socialising! This type of exercise is done without purposely being at the gym. It includes taking the stairs rather than the escalator; getting off at a bus stop earlier so you have to walk a bit further; grabbing a coffee from the cafe that’s not as close to your work… Your step count will reach over 10,000 a day without even trying!
Start wearing a pedometer for the next 7 days. Track your movements or steps and see how many steps you are currently doing. Your baseline target should be no less than 10,000 step per day. If you’re already doing that, aim higher, go for 20,000 steps per day.
Get up a little earlier and take the dog out for a walk or if you don’t have a pet friend, get a neighbour to keep you accountable and start the day off with a brisk walk for 30 minutes everyday building it up over the weeks to 60 minutes.
This will get the blood flowing, it will also boost your energy for the day and get your brain thinking clearly and get you ready to tackle your day with all the feel good endorphins it produces.
Exercising on an empty stomach or in a fasted state will also increase fat metabolism and get you into fat burning mode a lot faster!
Week 3 – Lifestyle Changes
This could be the most important of them all. Identify what behaviours are causing you the most harm right now and that are stopping you form having that healthy heart!
- Do you smoke?
- Do you have more than 2 standard drink per day?
- Do you sleep less than 7 hours per night?
Choose one bad habit that needs addressing first. By cutting down and or quitting this habit and making better choices, your blood pressure will be lowered, your levels of cortisol will be lower, your resting heart rate will be decreased and you will consume fewer calories which is a win-win which ever way you look at it.
For the next 7 days, pick one habit that you’re going to focus on and make that the goal to make it a new behaviour.
By just getting 7 hours+ of restorative sleep per night, your body will be more inclined to put muscle on, reduce body fat and not to mention function better due to your brain being rested and ready for the challenges ahead.
Week 4 – Physical Activity
This will be the hardest habit to build into your life as time is something people always complain about not having enough of!
It will take discipline to set aside time each day for exercise. Whether that be going to the gym to lift weights or going for a run on your lunch break, physical activity that elevates your heart rate is important for overall fitness as well as increasing levels productivity at work.
On Sunday, schedule your week ahead. Go through your diary and lock in your exercise times into your diary. Tell other people at work about the habit that you’re working on this week and that should they need you for a meeting, could they ask your first about your availability rather than just scheduling in a meeting over the top of your gym session.
These are appointments you’re making are with yourself. Don’t break them! For the next 7 days, those appointments are the most important meeting on your schedule.
Exercise releases endorphins which are happy hormones! So you can see why you should get moving every day! If you want to look healthy, feel good and experience greater levels of happiness in your life… then get exercising!
Habits create behaviours, only focus on one a time and the likelihood of them sticking will be much greater!
By applying these simple changes to your life, you will increase your chances of living your life to the fullest and with great heart health. It’s never too late to start too. Look after your heart health and it will look after you!
For more information or help to get your heart healthy, contact Coach Brianna Pitt at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.miyagi.fitness/apply/ today.