We all want to stay fit and healthy, no matter our age. Luckily it doesn’t take a fad diet or adherence to the latest exercise craze to stay in shape and pass the dreaded annual physical with flying colors. All you have to do is follow one simple formula: daily exercise + healthy nutrition = a fit and healthy you.
If last year’s annual physical left you feeling depressed or hopeless, have no fear. It really doesn’t take much to whip yourself back into shape. Most doctors agree that 20 to 30 minutes of daily exercise is enough to decrease your risk of diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and cancer. Need workout suggestions? Consider a brisk evening walk or a quick swim in the morning before work.
A daily exercise routine can also be a great way to spend quality time with your kids. Do you have a young child who loves to dance? Take a mommy and me dance class. Are you a father with an adventurous and active pre-teen boy? Try rock climbing. Research shows that children with active parents grow up to be active adults, and lead healthier lives themselves. Remember: daily exercise doesn’t have to be difficult. Just keep to some sort of routine and you’ll be halfway toward a healthier you and an A+ on your next annual physical.
Once you’ve committed to a daily exercise routine, you’ll need to master the final piece of the formula: healthy nutrition. In our fast-paced culture, healthy nutrition can be a parent’s holy grail, but the truth is that nothing is more important to your health than what you eat. No matter how much you exercise, you won’t see much change at your next annual physical unless you change your daily eating habits.
If you spend your days in an office, consider packing your lunch and a few heart-healthy snacks to munch on during breaks. Carrot sticks, apples, a handful of almonds and raisins, or a cup of yogurt are all great choices. A salad or a low-cal turkey sandwich can make a terrific lunch.
If you spend your days running after a small child, you may find yourself skimping on healthy nutrition simply due to lack of time. Consider cooking healthy meals ahead of time and freezing them for an easy, healthy lunch later in the week. For simple snacks on the go, stock up on string cheese, fruit smoothies, and bananas.
Daily exercise + healthy nutrition; nothing could be easier. With just a little forethought and preparation you’ll be in better shape than ever before. And, you can leave next year’s annual physical feeling proud.