Each year, we all decide to make some changes, whether it's exercising more, eating healthier or being a kinder and more generous person. As the summer approaches, we once again decide that we'd like to get in better shape and start being healthier. However, few of us actually get around to doing this and making the changes that we want to see in ourselves. Here are some health changes which you should try and make, no matter what time of the year it is.
1. Exercise regularly
Not many of us get enough exercise throughout the week, and for a lot of us, we feel like an hour of cycling, walking or swimming at the weekend is more than enough exercise! However, we really need to get half an hour of good exercise per day to really see the benefits. Whether it's weight loss, muscle gain or just a healthier body that you're after, regularly exercise is any form will do you a world of good. Some good suggestions for exercise include joining a swimming group, walking or jogging with a friend, football clubs, tennis groups or even Zumba or yoga classes.
2. Drink more water
Just like the amount of exercise you need to do, each person needs to drink quite a lot of water each day for it to really work. Eight glasses of water per day is the recommended amount for the average person, although if you're overweight, tall or have a lot of muscle, you should drink more. There are apps, programs and websites available where you can input your individual body details and find out how much water you should be drinking each day. Start off by trying to get through a two-litre bottle each day. If this seems like a lot, split it into four 500ml bottles. Take them to work with you or have them at the side of your desk throughout the day. Pour some into a glass to drink with your meal, and sip the rest of it while you're working or on the go. You'll be amazed at how much water you'll drink, and after a week, your body will feel much better! Water helps your skin, hair, teeth and bones, but also cleans out your internal organs and helps your body to digest your food better.
3. Stop smoking
If you don't smoke already, don't plan on starting. However, if you're a smoker, you should try your best this year to quit and break the habit for good. A great way to start is by getting an e-cigarette. These don't work for everyone, but if you have a lot of willpower and you're set on quitting this year, you should be able to make it work. Alongside buying yourself an e-cigarette, find out about e liquid, which you can use to refill them, thus making it cheaper for you to buy. You should see if there are any support groups in your area too if you feel like you need this or would benefit from extra help. If you can't find any, speak to your doctor who will be more than happy to assist you and give you some advice on what you can do.
4. Cut down on alcohol
If you don't drink much alcohol already, try to cut down further. Once a week can be too much, and if you're trying to lose weight or become healthier, you're better off without it altogether. If you tend to drink every day or every couple of days, try to narrow this down to half as much as you drink at the moment, and then when you're feeling more used to that amount, bring it down even further. You should also check how many units of alcohol you are consuming per day or per week and then check that out against the recommended guidelines. You may find that you're seriously over-consuming the recommended amount, in which case, you need to think about stopping and cutting down. Try other drinks as a substitute, for example, soft drinks or drinks which contain a lower percentage of alcohol. Fruit drinks are also very tasty, and these are much better for you than sodas or alcohol.