Heart, health and happiness

It’s easier to do the opposite of everything deemed healthy. So why should we go that extra mile for ourselves and our lifestyle?

Words by Jake Stolte

It’s Sunday morning. Vision blurred. Distorted senses have become a common occurrence when waking up. Hardly picturesque, multiple shades of grey intertwine amongst the dull low hanging fog. Leaving the comfort of the duvet is a struggle. Deciding between the dressing gown and a fry up or the running shoes and a banana, feels like a rather repetitive headspace to be in on a weekend morning.

Yet, ditching the duvet for the outside world no longer feels like a chore. The ultimate goal of a fit and healthy lifestyle is being achieved through regular exercise, a balanced diet and a positive mind set.

Daily exercise
Although it may feel like a chore, you’ll feel good after doing some exercise

Regular exercise can be tedious and hard to maintain. Many struggle making exercise routine or cannot find the time in their busy lives to do so.

Sarah Brookes, physical transformation coach, has emphasised the importance of regular exercise and suggested those who struggle should find something they enjoy. “Exercising is about lifestyle, so find something that fits in with your day and that you enjoy. That way it won’t be a chore, but something you look forward to.”

“Fitness is no longer fitness, it’s body sculpting.”

Sarah suggested that people should take time to explore their relationship and the avenues with fitness. “Fitness serves a huge function in how you feel. Find something you enjoy, if you love swimming then swim, if it’s walking then walk, if you take pride in being in the gym, then continue with that, there are so many routes you can go down.”

In order to eliminate the possibility of boredom, Sarah said adding variety to a training programme is a good idea, in order to create flexibility which allows individuals to experiment with their sessions.

“From a coach’s point of view, I always keep things fresh by mixing it up. People don’t know what to expect so therefore cannot dread a session. If you’re training alone then change your programme every 4/6 weeks to prevent boredom, set yourself challenges to keep things fresh.”

A positive mindset

There is a common misconception amongst society that in order to be fit and healthy you have to be shredded like fitness models and bodybuilders. Health and lifestyle coach Gemma Dawkins believes this is a major downfall of the current fitness industry. “I think it’s a real shame. Fitness is no longer fitness, it’s body sculpting. I think we have lost sight of the fact that fitness helps to improve our health.

“People only exercise because they feel they have to and this is due to the pressure from society to look a particular way.” Striving to look a particular way can affect our mental space, many become disappointed when they’re unable to replicate their dream body and this can lead to things such as depression and anxiety.

The cognitive approach towards a healthy lifestyle is important. Gemma says mindfulness is the key to success.

“I think it’s about exploring your relationship with food and fitness. I think that when people work on building their confidence and understanding their value then they will want to take care of themselves. I think a lot of people don’t really value themselves and therefore they don’t take care of themselves.”

A healthy lifestyle would not be complete without a balanced diet. In order to achieve a healthy lifestyle, many oftdieting programmes which essentially starve your body of particular foods/food groups in order to lose weight.

A balance diet
Keeping your diet fresh and fruity is essential

Professional Nutritionist, Aimi Jacques condemned the idea of dieting and said you should always pick a balanced diet over dieting. “A balanced diet is much more sustainable than what we conventionally think of as dieting, which all too often means eliminating whole food groups and potentially missing out on all the nutrients we need for our bodies to work at their best.”

“It is essential to eat foods from each food group as all macro-nutrients have an important role to play in how our bodies function, from metabolic processes to cell growth and repair. Refined sugars should be limited to an absolute minimum as they have no nutritional value and have limited benefits to our health.”

Whether it’s choosing to walk to University or work instead of taking the bus or choosing a healthy dinner instead of a takeaway, it’s essential to make the right lifestyle choices In order to positively impact your health and happiness.

See also:

A snapchat video of a healthy start to a University students morning.


jakestolte Written by:

Aspiring Journalist with a passion for surfing and travel. Other interests include sports, culture and the underground music scene.

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