Improving quality of life involves making dozens of positive decisions throughout the day. These include decisions about what we eat, how we manage stress, and how we sleep. Having and maintaining a fit and healthy lifestyle involves self-care and actively working to improve various facets of our lives.

Exercise

Being fit begins with an exercise regimen. Find a sport or workout that you enjoy. Implement physical activity into your daily routine, finding time before, in between, or after work to get your body moving. In order to accomplish a well-rounded approach to health, consider balancing your fitness routine with other aspects of self-care.

Diet

An essential companion to a good lifestyle is a clean and balanced diet. Changing your diet begins with making good choices consistently throughout your day and week. This means eliminating processed sugars, which increase inflammation and risk for diabetes and other ailments. It also means cutting down on fast food and processed foods that contain too many calories and not enough nutrients. As Livestrong suggests, your diet should have the right combination of nutrients, proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. This way your body gets the components it needs to replenish, heal, and stay active.

One way to ensure a healthy diet is to organize yourself and plan your meals for the week. Cooking at home and in bulk will help prevent you from making last-minute trips for fast food. If you cook ahead, you’ll have prepared meals to last you a couple of days. This is an efficient and economical way to build good habits and resist temptation.

Sleep

According to Men’s Fitness magazine, sleep is an absolutely vital part of recovery. When you sleep, you recover, repair, and replace. Your brain shuts down and repairs itself; this way it is ready for the next day. People that neglect or cut down on their sleep will often feel fatigued and fail to progress in their workouts.

There are a lot of reasons why people suffer from sleep deprivation, but making an effort to go to sleep early can have many benefits for your health. Harvard Health reports that good sleeping habits will promote a better metabolism, help combat disease, and improve learning, memory, mood, and cardiovascular health.

If you are one of the many people that struggle with getting a good night’s sleep, there are a few things you can do to aid your efforts:

  • Many people use what is called pink noise as a way to produce steady uninterrupted sound. Many noise machines on the market have been proven to help people stay asleep longer. Noise helps people relax and can block noise interruptions that might pull you out of REM sleep.
  • Light and darkness. According to the Huffington Post, light can inhibit the secretion of melatonin, which is your body’s natural sleep hormone. Making your room as dark as possible can actually help you fall asleep faster and get better-quality sleep.
  • Pillows and sheets. Investing in some high-quality soft pillows and sheets can make you feel more comfortable and cozy, making falling asleep easier.

Stress

They say stress is the killer disease. Suffering from chronic stress can take a serious toll on your body and mind. Staying active, eating, and sleeping well are good antidotes. You can also find other ways to mitigate stress:

  • Personal space. Create your own personal and quiet space at home where you can sit quietly, practice meditation, or read without interruptions. Sometimes all we need is a moment alone to collect ourselves and our thoughts.
  • Venture out. Spending time out in nature is a great way to fight off stress caused from our fast-paced and hectic lives.

Practicing self-care is your greatest investment for the future. Taking care of your body, health, and mental well-being will not only improve your quality of life but make you more productive as well. Remember that physical activity, fuel, and recovery are necessary ingredients for a healthy life. Regular yoga practice is the better way to self-care your physical and mental health.

Photo Credit: Unsplash

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