Between Birth and Death: Healthy Life Changes

There is “a time to be born, and a time to die” (Ecc. 3:2).  It’s a pretty simple concept really; you’re  born, you live, you die.  Really, the only thing we have any semblance of control over is how we live.  Today’s question: how are you going to live?  Specifically, how are you going to take care of your body while you’re alive?

We all know that our bodies are made in the “image of God” (Genesis 1:27) and we should take care of them.  Everyone wants to be healthier, but no one really seems to know how.  If you look online, you can find thousands of diets, exercise plans, workouts, whatever.  Everybody seems to have a different idea for what you should do to be really healthy.  Most of these involve some sort of fad diet or workout that might work for a little while, but won’t mean much for your long-term health.  Being healthy takes commitment and generally isn’t “easy as 1, 2, 3”.  Here are a few real tips that can make real changes in your life.

Leave the Scale Alone!
Anyone who has ever got too attached to their scale knows the truth of this.  You look at the scale every day, wondering if the numbers have gone down.  If they have, you feel validated.  If they haven’t, you reach for the ice cream because what you’re doing obviously isn’t working.   Checking your weight every day can lead to obsession.  Weight fluctuates, especially for us ladies!  If you’re working out hard and building muscle, your weight might not really reflect the changes your body is going through.  Ditch the scale, or at least cut back to only once a week.  Use a mirror and check the way your clothes fit for more accurate ways of noticing change.

It Really is the Most Important Meal of the Day
I’ve heard it.  You’ve heard it.  Deep down, we all know it’s true.  Breakfast really is the most vital meal of your entire day.  It helps give you energy to start your day off right, and fills you up so you can resist bad snacking throughout the rest of your day.  Unfortunately, you only get the real benefits if you have a good breakfast – no maple long johns or drive-thru breakfast burrito.  Start your day by giving your body something healthy.   Greek yogurt with fresh berries, egg-white omelettes, or anything loaded with fiber like oatmeal or whole grain cereals are also a good option.  If you're into smoothies and shakes, Dr. Oz has an excellent breakfast smoothie.

Start Your Day Off Right
Nothing like waking up early to go run, right?  While it doesn’t sound too appealing, exercise in the morning can help you jump-start your day.  You can start off the day burning some calories and you won’t have to worry about finding time to fit it in later in your busy day.  It will wake you up better than a cup of coffee, without all the stimulants.  Plus, getting into the habit of getting up early to exercise will help you sleep like a baby at night.

Make a Plan
There are very few things in the world that happen by accident, and this isn’t one of them.  Getting healthier is a choice.  Make a plan and stick with it.  Resist the overwhelming urge to hit your alarm when it’s time to wake up and run.  Make a plan for what you want to eat and get it ready the day before so you’re not pulling up to the menu asking for the number three for the third time that week.  Find a time to run or ride your bike so you’re not climbing into bed thinking “well, missed it again.”  It might be difficult to make some changes, but you will definitely be glad you did!

Lauren Bookout

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