As the last few months have taught us, wellness has to be a priority in our lives. What does that mean? Well, it’s different for everyone—but there are a few essential principles that will benefit everyone. Taking care of your body and mind isn’t just about your yearly check-up. It’s about nurturing and feeding yourself with consistency. Here are the four pillars of essential wellness as I see them.
Exercise is Medicine
You have heard the phrase “exercise is the best medicine.” It’s true! Regular exercise helps people remain limber, boosts physical health, and enhances mental health. Performance and resilience are only honed over time and with consistency. And lastly, but so importantly, exercise improves longevity. Remember, this body is all you get. Take care of it, as it is your temple. Look at that list: that’s a lot of benefits from just regular exercise. Nothing else will give you those results.
It seemed that working out might become more difficult during the pandemic, especially with gyms closed during the Covid lockdown periods. But instead of giving up, the pros got creative and made exercise possibly wherever you are. All the best exercise gurus are teaching their workouts by Zoom or an app now.
Whether you like yoga, pilates, body sculpting, weightlifting, kickboxing, aerobics, or Peloton classes, there are options for you. Get that rusty old bike out, get the tires pumped up, shine your wheels and head out. Or step outside, and enjoy the beauty and eternal spring of Southern California! Take a good, brisk walk with your EarPods on and your favorite upbeat music turned up. And walking isn’t just good for your body—it’s a great way to connect with your family or pod. Grab your significant other or even the kids. You can all bond together as your heart rate increases. It’s a win-win. It doesn’t matter what you do, just do it and do it regularly and you won’t believe how your life and wellbeing improves.
When you eat well, your body thanks you by feeling well. Solid nutrition is more important than ever, with rising stress levels and plenty of anxiety as we live under lockdown. Take the time to research healthy ways to eat. There are so many easy, great programs out there. Find the one that’s right for you: Keto, Paleo, Weight Watchers, Noom, Nutrisystem, Hello Fresh.
Your body is comprised of 60% water, so hydration is just as important as diet and nutrition. Without ample water, your body won’t perform as efficiently at any task. Stay away from soda. You know that it isn’t healthy, even the diet varieties. They actually help retain water weight. If you’re bored with water, get creative by infusing it with fresh fruit or drink from a colorful bottle or add a fun reusable straw. No matter how you dress it up, you must drink water daily. The rule of thumb is to drink eight eight-ounce glasses, which equals about 2 liters or half a gallon a day. Make it fun, make it a game, but again just do it!
It’s so important to keep your biorhythms and get regular sleep. Lockdowns and the disruptions of our everyday work lives have tempted many to gamble with their sleep health by staying up late and working at strange times. While it may not seem like a big deal, getting your 7-8 hrs of good, regular sleep is necessary to be your best. You will wake up rested, which your brain and body need, as it works hard during the day.
Remember that children from ages 3-5 need 10-13 hrs daily, kids ages 6-13 need 9-11 hours daily, and even teenagers 14-17 actually need 8-10 hours a day as their brains and bodies are still developing. According to the Mayo Clinic, research shows that people who sleep less than the recommended times over long periods don’t perform as well on complex mental tasks as do people who get closer to seven hours of sleep a night.
There you are—four pillars of essential wellness to create a stable basis of health. You only have one body—take care of it! And if you have a little energy left over? Invest that in adding some plants to your life. You’ll benefit even more. We’re happy to share more of our wellness habits. Drop us a line!