Okay okay…bear with us on this. We completely realize we may be stepping on some major MLM toes, but hey…somebody has got to say this…
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by Aubrey Rissler | staff writer for The Snap Mom
It occurred to me while running the other day that there’s really no substitute for living a truly healthy and active lifestyle. The shake that will melt the pounds away, the pills that will kick your cellulite to the curb or the wrap that will shrink your muffin top in minutes are not the problem; believing that these products can resolve and fix your problems is the problem. I’m not doubting people’s testimonials. I’m just stating that there is no replacement for eating right and exercising. Maybe money can buy a size down in my closet, and l can sit and expect to feel great, but there may still be some health issues lurking and satisfaction lacking when I look in the mirror. As boring and old-fashioned as it sounds, nothing beats working hard and eating well. Don’t get me wrong – I drink a green smoothie daily, and use more oils than I probably should, but you just cannot compare manufactured products to what real nutrition and movement will do for your mind and body, especially long term.
5 easy ways to REALLY transform your body:
Considering that our body is mainly made up of water (brain=75% water, blood=92% water, bones=22% water, and muscles=75% water), the effects of dehydration can be staggering. It decreases mood and energy, and can lead to bad skin and muscle cramps. Headaches usually begin with dehydration, when our body begins constantly sending alerts to tell us that something is seriously wrong and we need to fix it ASAP. We gain weight due to dehydration. Likewise, we can LOSE weight when we choose to drink water both at the start of the day and throughout. Proper hydration helps remove toxins, speeds up our metabolism and gives the stomach a “fuller” feeling. Don’t forget that breastfeeding, heat, working out, alcohol and caffeine can all lend to dehydration. So plan ahead and give your body the adequate amount of hydration it needs to stay feeling great! Try chia seeds and fruit-infused water if you’re interested in an easy way to create a more hydrating drink.
2. Real Foods
Even more important than jumping into an active lifestyle, is investing in your future by choosing whole, healthy, and real foods. Our bodies should be looked at like we have to fuel them to keep them going. In order to do that, we have to start choosing the proper fuel. Sugars and cakes and preservatives will never satisfy our actual cravings. Our body works hard to rid itself of toxins, and if we don’t help it along the way, we will feel sluggish and experience sugar spikes and drops, leaving us on the couch and/or reaching for even more sugar. Training our taste buds takes less time than we expect, and we can relearn that nature’s sweeteners (honey and fruit) can be plenty sweet to satisfy. It’s simple: it’s easier to deny calories than to actually have to work them off, especially when your body hasn’t been properly fueled and prepped to do just that.
For some reason, we all skip over stretching as if it doesn’t have any importance to our work out. We just love to jump right in. The ironic thing about stretching, is that it’s crucial to furthering and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Plus, it really doesn’t take that long. If we added into our workout a 5-15 minute opener stretch and 5-15 minute closing stretch, we could add so much benefit to each and every workout. To those looking for a yoga practice, I always suggest Iyengar, or alignment-based, yoga. For those who sit in front of a computer, or at a desk or have to hunch over dental clients all day, for example, posture is a HUGE deal. Our body needs alignment in order to not break down. Did you know that if you have tight hips you will strain your knees? And if you have tight hamstrings you will flatten your lumbar and strain your lower back? As we gain flexibility, we mold into so much more. We prevent cartilage breakdown, which is so valuable as we age. We begin to protect our spine and increase bone health as we do yoga. We increase blood flow and decrease blood pressure, learn to focus, discover a healthier lifestyle, regulate adrenal glands and find a deeper focus. Isn’t that worth less than an hour of stretch per day?
Newton’s first law of motion, or the law of inertia, states that “an object at rest stays at rest, and an object in motion stays in motion with the same speed and in the same direction…” That high I get when accomplishing more than I expected in a day feels like nothing else. The same goes for a workout. We need to keep our bodies in motion in order for them to continue in motion. A sedentary lifestyle will never render an active one. Furthermore, staying in motion and living a healthy lifestyle can include any kind of workout: from walking (a suggested minimum of 5 miles total for the day), running, yoga, spinning, swimming, biking, weight training, etc. It increases libido, energy and mental focus. A study from the Annals of Internal Medicine found that those leading a fit lifestyle midlife have a 36% lower risk of dementia than their less-fit peers. It doesn’t just matter to your body, it matters to your brain.
The mind game. I had to get to a place where I recognized my disdain for the way that I felt whenever I did NOT workout, rather than my struggle during my workout. I always tell myself, and others when we workout together: No one enjoys the process of the workout. No one loves the feeling of “pushing through” or “not giving up” or “digging deeper” in the beginning. It’s something that you have to work through and focus on in order to get that outstanding feeling that everyone loves AFTER the workout ends. The feeling of being comfortable in your own skin, glowing and proud that you did something that’s good for you and your family.
I hope this motivates you. These 5 tips can truly transform your life, and the best part is that you didn’t have to pay a membership fee to begin using them. You just have to use what you were given when you were born.
About the author:
Aubrey Rissler is a part-time writer and full-time nanny. She graduated from the University of South Florida with a magazine journalism degree. Aubrey is passionate about travel, health, and yoga. Follow her on Instagram: @srqyoga