Your health is closely related to your success; much closer than you realize. There is no point in succeeding in everything you do in life when you also lose health and stamina in the process. An unhealthy lifestyle is actually a challenge for those who are working towards achieving several personal goals in life since being sick can stop you from doing your best.
Staying healthy is also important for other reasons. You can stay driven for much longer and maintain stamina that you need for multitasking throughout the day when your body is in good shape. You will still have the energy to get together with friends or take care of your family at the end of the day too; these are just as important as your career and other activities.
So, it is clear that staying healthy is not just important for the sake of staying healthy. It directly affects your ability to pursue – and achieve – your goals. To help you maintain your health and stamina while assuming many different roles, here are the tips and tricks you need to follow.
It Starts with a Good Breakfast
Do you know how breakfast is said to be the most important meal of the day? That is actually true. What you consume for breakfast affects your performance for the rest of the day; more so than you are willing to admit.
For example, consuming a lot of carbs for breakfast forces the body to process those carbs for the rest of the day. Instead of gaining a sustainable energy boost, you reach your peak before lunch and end up being tired until late in the afternoon.
Ideally, you want to consume protein and vitamins – as well as minerals that boost your metabolism – for breakfast. This is why Greek yogurt with probiotics and a fruit salad with banana and spinach in it works really well for breakfast.
These power-breakfast options are usually easy to prepare too. You can take 30 minutes before going to bed to prepare a meal for the morning and have everything ready. This is how you squeeze in a healthy breakfast when you have a busy day.
Healthy Snacks Are Your Friend
Eating healthily doesn’t mean you cannot have some snacks throughout the day; it’s actually the opposite. Assuming a healthy eating pattern means eating in smaller portions but more frequently. Instead of staying hungry until lunch, it is better to grab wholegrain cookies as a pick-me-up.
Similar to a healthy breakfast, there are a lot of simple snacks you can prepare to fill gaps between your meals. There are also healthy snack products to choose from if you don’t want to prepare them yourself.
I personally love apple and peanut butter in the afternoon. Apple slices contain a lot of antioxidants that support the body’s metabolism; peanut butter, on the other hand, is healthy and very rewarding at the same time. Yes, I do keep my own jar of peanut butter with me.
Other snacks are just as easy to prepare. A bowl of mixed berries, mixed nuts that you can now buy in packets, and even leftover greek yogurt from breakfast are equally healthy and fulfilling. If you want to go a step further, you can add dark chocolate and kale chips to your list.
Be Creative with Your Exercises
We often think of exercising as a routine thing to do. To exercise effectively, you have to spend an hour or two at the gym, right? Well, not necessarily. While spending time at the gym to get good workout sessions in is recommended, it is not the only way to exercise regularly.
There are alternative exercise routines that you can do anywhere. You can, for instance, go with routines designed for the office. You don’t need specific tools or a lot of time to do them, just the usual office furniture and a few minutes before the end of the day.
Simpler exercises are also worth exploring. Taking a 30-minute walk to the coffee shop instead of taking your car is a good start. A simple walk is more than enough to get your body to its optimum cardio state.
Follow it up with a walk back to the office and you have a routine exercise you can do every day without jumping through hoops. Other forms of exercises – including a bit of basketball with coworkers after a long day – are just as exciting to explore.
Learn to Optimize Your Time
Another way to make time for good exercises is by being smarter with how you manage your time. For example, you can save a lot of time commuting and attending classes by pursuing a degree online instead of enrolling in an offline university.
Carson-Newman University has a fantastic article on how online nursing degrees are equally – if not more so – valuable than their offline counterparts. You can learn more about why become a nurse practitioner and how the online program can help you on the university’s page.
Taking an online course instead of an offline program is only the beginning. You can also be more effective with your time when you adopt methodologies such as Pomodoro. The key here is optimizing the time you have to complete more tasks so you can squeeze more in during the day.
Making time also means setting aside time for healthy activities. Don’t wait until you have time to exercise or eat healthily. Put your next walk in your calendar so you always have the time. The more you do this, the better you’ll be at adding activities to your schedules.
Yes, you can take shortcuts when you are trying to live more healthily. Shortcuts are great for saving time and getting you to the healthy lifestyle you always wanted to have sooner. Instead of cooking your own healthy meals, for instance, you can get healthy meals delivered to you on a daily basis.
This may seem like a simple shortcut to take. After all, there are a lot of service providers that offer healthy meals to professionals. However, saving 30 minutes here and 40 minutes there on meal preps and other activities allow you to allocate the freed-up time for other activities.
You can also take shortcuts with your workouts. Instead of three sessions a week, you can go with one intense session followed by a light one over the weekend. The in-the-office workouts we discussed earlier are also handy.
Before taking shortcuts, make sure you know what you are doing. Using the heavy workout as an example, you want to consult a trainer and have a program designed specifically for your body before changing how you exercise.
Calm the Mind
Health is more than just a physical thing. In order to stay healthy, you also have to keep the mind healthy. Stress, pressure from work and school, and problems that you have to solve can severely affect your brain and reduce your immune system.
Here’s a simple trick that can help you stay calm at the end of the day. Before going to bed, write down three things you are grateful for the most from that day and be thankful for them. It is a great way to calm the mind while remembering the good things you have in life.
You can also master some breathing and meditation techniques. Simply controlling your breath for a few seconds is more than enough to calm you down when something bad happens at work. Lowering your position (i.e. from standing to sitting) works brilliantly too.
More importantly, there are a lot of resources that can help you stay calm during difficult times. Spotify is filled with playlists of calming sounds from nature. There are apps that help you calm down using visual and audio cues.
Divide and Conquer
Of course, pursuing multiple goals in life doesn’t mean doing everything by yourself. You can get the support of colleagues and family members too. In fact, you have complete control over how you divide tasks and make them more manageable.
Instead of trying to complete your nursing practitioner class assignment yourself, for instance, work with fellow online students and get the assignment completed faster. Instead of micromanaging everything at work, trust your team and let them back you up.
The goal here is to keep the tasks you have in hand manageable, so you have enough time to take care of yourself. While it is very tempting to do everything yourself, overwork is still the prominent reason why you cannot maintain good health when you are busy.
Besides, working together is good for your health too. Socializing with coworkers and working together to solve problems are some of the activities that affect your body psychologically. You feel fresher and lighter when you have people you trust.
Take Baby Steps
One last tip to keep in mind: change doesn’t happen overnight. When you are used to staying at the office until late at night and living an unhealthy lifestyle, making the necessary changes to be healthier will be a challenge of its own.
The most important thing is to take baby steps in the right direction. Start with a healthier breakfast, squeeze in more walks, and work your way towards living a healthier life, even when you are working a full-time job while pursuing a higher degree and trying to raise children.