Every human being on Earth has flaws. I am no exception to this fact. And when it comes to health and fitness, we all have something we can improve on.
Maybe you rarely cook your own meals, or you drink more coffee than you’d like to admit, or maybe you don’t exercise as often as you’d like.
I know that I personally want to sleep more. I currently sleep about six or seven hours a night, but I would really like to increase that to seven or eight hours.
And while it is certainly not an easy task to correct habits that we know are not good for us, there is no denying that when it comes to your overall health and wellness, it is well worth the effort.
However, you can’t give up these bad habits until you’ve first identified what they are. So, here are five bad habits that can keep you from reaching your health and fitness goals.
This may seem obvious, but it is something that many people continue to engage in today.
In fact, according to The Washington Post: “45 million Americans diet each year.” This is a very high percentage of the population of the United States (more than one in eight people).
If you think that restricting yourself to eating as few calories as possible each day will make you healthier, it won’t. The science is clear that extreme diets don’t work.
There is no quick fix scheme to lose weight quickly in a healthy and sustainable way. So if you want to achieve results that really keep you long-term, you need to eat with a small deficit that will still provide your body with all the nutrients it needs, keeping you happy and healthy while you work.
This is the one I’m really trying to focus on right now. Some nights I sleep well and wake up feeling rested. Other nights, I tend to shorten my sleep so I can work a few more hours.
I know this is not the best approach, but I am a Type A person who wants to walk at full speed all the time. But if there’s one thing I do know, it’s that sleep is crucial to maintaining a healthy weight and keeping your mind fresh and performing at its best.
Exercising to Eat Whatever You Want
There is no denying that exercise can be wonderful for your body and help you stay healthier and fitter. However, if you think that exercise alone will make up for a terrible diet, it simply isn’t true.
And besides, having the mentality that you have to earn your food is an unhealthy approach. Therefore, viewing food as a reward for strenuous exercise alone can damage your relationship with it.
What you put on your body is perhaps more important than your exercise routine when you’re trying to get healthier, so establishing a healthy relationship with food will be crucial in helping you achieve your goals.
Doing the Following 24/7
If you’re married to your work, you’re likely to feel a lot more stressed overall. And stress is one of the worst things for your body and your overall health.
I must admit that I often let my engineering work increase my stress levels. Whenever this happened, I could feel the negative impacts on my sleep schedule, how I felt when I exercised, and even on the food that I chose to put into my body.
It can definitely be difficult to find a balance between personal and professional life, but I can safely say that it is worth trying to disconnect your brain from work at the end of the night. You will sleep more soundly, you will feel more energetic every day and, in the end, you will optimize your work and your health.
Viewing Food Like This
Whether you think food is good or bad, that way of thinking can be detrimental to you in the long run.
While some foods are more nutrient-dense than others, labeling foods “good” or “bad” can prevent you from developing a healthy mindset, especially if you’re stuck with the food mindset.
It is best to view food for what it is: a source of fuel for your body. Try to get rid of emotional attachment and focus on eating a well-balanced diet rich in nutrients and minimally processed foods that do not eliminate all the foods you like.
Eliminating bad habits and replacing them with healthier ones will help you make lifestyle changes that you can maintain for the long term. By doing so, you will be able to achieve your ultimate goal – to find your happiest and healthiest self.