I was recently contacted by the lovely Ali from Total Greek Yoghurt asking if I'd share my Top 10 Tips for living a healthy lifestyle to link in with their Fit 4 Summer campaign. Of course, I was more than happy to agree - if I can help inspire someone to live a healthier, happier life I'm a happy bunny indeed!
1. Eat more fruit and veg!
It's simple, it's obvious but we all need to hear it from time to time. Eating more fruit and veg will help you to feel healthier - I promise. We get a big organic veg box delivered once a week and then top up with other seasonal fruit and veg! While you're at it, why not try...
2. Cut down on wheat and introduce some new, exciting carbs and grains into your life
Curried Quinoa Salad is a flavoursome introduction into the world of alternative grains!
3. Find the exercise that works for you!
If your face looks like this when you think about going to that exercise class or putting on your trainers for a run, why not take a couple of minutes to think about whether you've made the right choice of exercise. We're all completely different, and that's awesome so surely it follows that we'll all enjoy different ways of exercising! Do you hate being alone? Why not try a team sport? Don't like to focus on one thing? Try training for a Triathlon! Don't like high impact exercise? Try pilates or yoga! Mix and match and find what works for you - not what works for the lady over the road or the man in the gym! (In case you're wondering - this was taken midway through a 32 mile bike ride.... I was happy but hungry!)
4. Stop Comparing Yourself!
This is something I'm really big on right now - the comparison trap isn't healthy or helpful. I've written a longer post about this here if you want some extra tips on how to stop being a chronic comparer!
5. Eat Breakfast!
Just man up and do it. It's SO important to eat a good, healthy breakfast - and don't let yourself get stuck in the rut of toast or cereal. The recipes tab at the top of this page has lots of interesting yummy breakfast ideas, as do lots of other blogs out there. Put in 15 minutes of research and plan yourself a week of new breakfasts - I promise you that you won't be disappointed!
6. Learn to love yourself
And more important, learn to laugh at yourself! You are awesome, unique and truly wonderful. When you learn how to accept that, it'll be a heck of a lot easier to live a happy, healthy life. That doesn't mean becoming arrogant or self involved. Instead, learn how to accept yourself the way you are, accept that and enjoy being you. We all have down days and that's ok, but it's so important to try to learn some self respect! If you really struggle with that, ask someone (a good friend, a counsellor... whoever you feel comfortable talk about it with) for help. There's no shame in asking for help :)
7. Treat Yourself
Healthy living isn't about restricting and punishing yourself - a healthy lifestyle is one that's joyful and rewarding to live! When I plucked up the courage to enter a half marathon, I treated myself to a new pair of running shoes. When I'm getting grumpy about being wheat free, I go mess around in my kitchen and treat myself with some delicious new cake/cookie/brownie. When I've done a tough run, I reward myself with a chocolate pear recovery shake, a shower and a sit down with some of my favourite blogs. Treats don't have to be expensive or big - they can be any little thing that makes you happy!
8. Rest and relax
This is so, so, so important. Our bodies aren't made to work non-stop. Find yourself getting ill or injured a lot? Rest. In my previous job, I frequently worked 80 hour weeks. I ended up in hospital with stress age 22. I ended up on medication and in counselling for anxiety issues. And you know how I could have prevented that? By resting. I see so many bloggers who do three, sometimes 4 intense workouts a day with no rest days - it's not healthy and in the long run is going to do you more harm than good. Schedule in at least one rest day a week (and not just from exercise - from work too) and stick to it. I promise you that the rest of your week will be easier and more effective if you just learn to relax and chill out once a week :)
9. Dream big dreams and take a risk
Embracing a Healthier Lifestyle posts for a bit more advice on dreaming big and taking risks if you need a bit more inspiration :)
10. Read, Read, Read!
Since decided to embrace a healthier lifestyle, I've devoured blogs and books like you wouldn't believe! Here are some of my favourites:
Books - How to Run by Paula Radcliffe, any of Anita Bean's books on Nutrition, Runners World Complete Book of Women's Running
Magazines - Womens Running, Runners World and Zest
Blogs - ohsheglows.com, sweettoothrunner.com, http://www.keepinghealthygettingstylish.com, bangsandabun.com, britchickruns.com and about a zillion more!
I definitely recommend you check out Total's Fit 4 Summer campaign as well - there's lots of extra tips and exercises there too :)
What are your top 10 tips for healthy living? Feel free to do your own post and pop it in the comments!
Also - competition time!
If you fancy the chance to win a month's supply of Total Yoghurts, why not head over here? Easy peasy lemon squeezy :)