Fall is here. The kids are back in school. Another football season has begun and the holiday season is quickly approaching.
Fall also symbolizes the inevitable closure of another year. With so much going on, now more than ever, it is imperative that you stay on top of your health and situate yourself to finish strong. Here are 5 simple reminders to help you stay on top of your game:
I know, I know, I know; this one is easier said than done. However, this often overlooked aspect of health is imperative if you wish to be at your best. During slumber, our bodies have a chance to devote all resources to repairing all the unavoidable damage we do throughout the day.
When we don’t allow our bodies the 8-9 hours to recharge, we begin to operate at a deficit. All processes including thinking, memory, reaction-time and immune-function suffer. What’s worse; when you don’t make up the missed hours, the deficit increases and you are left in a mental haze and more susceptible to catching that bug going around the office.
2) DRINK MORE WATER
We’ve touched on this one before as far as its importance in both quality and quantity so I’ll keep this one short. Proper hydration is absolutely essential for all cellular function and can assist in a wide variety of functions from staving off osteoarthritis and preventing muscle cramping, to controlling your appetite.
Each day you should aim to drink at least half of your body weight in ounces.
3) GET MOVING
We’re reviewing the basics here so it should be no surprise that exercise is a part of your year-ending assignment. The benefits of exercise are countless. It encourages blood flow throughout your body, providing fresh oxygen rich blood to tissues and removal of metabolic wastes. It increases muscle tone which actually increases stimulation to your brain, staving off osteoarthritis, burning off fat and dropping those unwanted pounds, and it is proven to chemically reduce stress and make you feel good.
Depending on your level of fitness, “exercise” can mean different things to different people. Wherever you’re at, there’s no excuse not to get up, get out and move. Break a sweat even. Instead of watching that show, take a lap around the neighborhood. The fresh air and nature can be mentally invigorating to your senses. Step it up and get moving at least 3 times a week. Use it or lose it.
4) DIET DISCIPLINE
Oh the dichotomous nature of food. It can be one of our best tools to utilize in order to thrive or it can destroy us, inside and out. Evidence is constantly mounting, implicating what we eat as the culprit behind countless pathologies. The power of food, both positive and negative, is something everyone needs to be aware of.
Pick a problematic food and eliminate it from your diet for a month. Choose something like grains, dairy, soy, corn, etc. Make it interesting and replace it with something new. You’ll be surprised with all the alternatives out there that you never try due to being stuck in a routine. Monitor the way you feel. You may notice that rash, headache, or fatigue has been reduced or eliminated. You may also notice when you eat that food again after a little time off, something doesn’t feel right. You’ve now identified a potential food sensitivity and can begin to eat smart to live instead of living to eat.
5) MAKE YOUR HEALTH A TOP PRIORITY
Stop neglecting your health; it shouldn’t be an option. I was talking to someone the other day and they labeled me as all into that “health stuff.” Without even thinking, I automatically responded that I was all into that “life stuff.” So often we have friends, family members or business associates that have acquired a neurodegenerative disease or are no longer with us, and we act surprised. The fragility of this precious life is a real thing, not to be taken for granted. If you value your time here, respect and pay the attention to your body that it deserves.
We view things like car maintenance, purchasing new clothes and pursuing wealth as necessities, but somewhere along the line, taking care of ourselves became viewed as a luxury. What good are any of those things if you can’t enjoy them due to a disease, or much worse, death? When it comes to our health, small sacrifices now are huge investments in the future.
Why not be checked out at least once a month to make sure your brain is functioning properly, your body is properly aligned and that there are no other signs of an impending issue? Doesn’t it make more sense to stay out in front rather than frantically react when the wheels fall off and the you-know-what hits the fan?
I know some of these suggestions may seem elementary, but we’re keeping it simple here so you have no excuse not to follow through. Through repetition, hopefully these health fundamentals will stay on your mind, leading to implementation and an eventual reaping of the benefits. If you have questions about any of these suggestions or would like to start your own proactive maintenance plan, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Enjoy the fall!
I read this post as I was dehydrated, smoking yet another cigarette, gazing upon the empty bags of chips I consumed late last night and corresponding layer of tummy chub I’ve never before had, and battling the most significant bout of depression to date. This post couldn’t have come at a better time. I appreciate the reminder doc. Your blog continues to be an inspiration. Thank you.