It’s too common to want to improve your lives so that you live the best ones. You may think of making huge changes as the beginning of a new year. But the truth is that smaller, more sustainable actions and hacks actually help you improve your day-to-day life when they add up over time.
These simple little tricks and habits can help you improve your health and generally live the best life.
But the hard part comes in figuring out what and how to improve your life. And, I’m here listing out 7 small health changes you start to work on to begin your new year.
1. Walk More
Walking is one of the easiest, most convenient activities you can do. Whether outside or around the house, walking is a great way to get your body moving. All you have to do is walk faster and put in more time to each walk to burn more calories.
For the most benefits, a healthy adult need between 4,000 and 18,000 steps daily and 10,000 steps (or about 5 miles) is the best target for each day.
Walking more does have added value, especially when you walk briskly for a longer duration or up hills and slowly work up to 10,000 steps a day. If you can’t walk outside, try using a step-exercise video at home.
2. Stretch it out
Stretching is helpful in keeping your body feeling good, especially if you’re working in front of the computer for hours each day. Incorporating some simple stretches into your routine can help you avoid sore, stiff muscles and joints, as well as improve flexibility.
If you can, take a break every couple of hours from work and do a few standing stretches. It will help you energize and re-focus when you get back to work.
3. Try out Pilates
Pilates has become increasingly popular over the past few decades. It isn’t just for the studio, it’s a great bodyweight exercise you can do at home. You don’t need any fancy equipment to get in a good workout right in your own home.
Pilates is a great way to improve your posture and flexibility, especially when you spend most of your time sitting. It also builds strength and works on your balance in the long term.
Research also shows that pilates can help manage chronic low pain and possibly even improve sleep quality in some people. There are many online videos offering specific aims, such as improving strength, relieving back pain and many more.
4. Do Laundry Squats
You can make laundry day a little more active by incorporating squats into your routine.
Squats are a strength training exercise that will benefit you in many ways, such as improving flexibility, building muscles, strengthening your core, and building physical abilities and strength. Squats work up so many muscles at the same time without specific equipment.
Set your laundry basket on the floor and squat down as you pick an item from the washing machine. Repeat until you get all of your laundries out of the washing machine.
5. Meal Prepping
Meal prepping is a great time and money-saver. You can always make healthy meals in bulk and freeze them for later.
Doing this not only saves you on a busy day of work when you have no energy left to cook, but also stops you from ordering delivery which is a waste of money.
It also helps to make sure you have healthy food available for the future, so you don’t always need to buy more.
6. Track and Set a Groceries/Dine out/Delivery Budget
It’s worth taking the time to track, calculate and set a budget for your food expenses every month.
Before I started to set a budget for my food expenses, I first tracked average monthly spending for over 3 months, and it shocked me to figure out how much I literally spend solely on food. I reflected on it, worked on what I could cut down on, and set a realistic budget.
Currently, I’m using Google Excel on my phone to track my monthly food expenses. I split it into weekly for easier to keep track and remind myself how much I left for the next few weeks.
7. Limit Meat and Dairy
Meat and dairy are very costly compared to other forms of protein. I’ve been cutting down on meat and dairy consumption and go on plant-based a few times each week.
It saves me a lot of money and is better for the planet, too. There are many misconceptions about eating plant-based, but it tends to be cheaper and healthier than you’d think.
If you’re planning to try out the plant-based diet, always make sure to get your protein from alternative sources like beans, lentils, tofu, and nuts each day.
Everyone has their New Year Resolution, and most of them want to focus more on their health. A healthy lifestyle is crucial to maintain your body in a good shape, so you can live your life to the fullest.