IDENTIFYING 4 COUNTER-PRODUCTIVE HABITS WHEN IT COMES TO YOUR HEALTH AND FITNESS

IDENTIFYING 4 COUNTER-PRODUCTIVE HABITS WHEN IT COMES TO YOUR HEALTH AND FITNESS

When it comes to a healthy lifestyle we are constantly moving in one direction or the other; moving towards better, healthier habits or moving away from them via habits that are destructive for our health. Coming to grips with such a realization is often a great catalyst for positive change, as the stark realization that “If I do nothing, I am actually moving AWAY from my goals vs simply not moving towards them” sets in. 

We all want to feel better in general and be better prepared to perform regular daily activities. While it certainly takes a concentrated effort to achieve, the good news is that there are small actions and steps that each of us can take which will yield noticeable results. Who doesn’t like maximum results for minimum effort; the ‘best bang for our buck’ so to speak!

Here are four basic habits to avoid, even if only incrementally at first, that will result in a positive outcome, moving you towards a healthier life rather than away from it. 

 

EATING ALL OF THE TIME, EVEN IF YOU’RE NOT HUNGRY

If we don’t eat according to our natural hunger and satiety signals, it can easily lead to chronic overeating and additional, unwanted pounds. It can also create a breeding ground for diabetes, heart disease, and other serious illnesses. It also doesn’t help that when we eat for the sake of eating (often as a result of boredom), we tend to eat highly processed and sugar-rich foods; saturating our bodies with unhealthy ingredients. 

How can we address this habit?

  • Tame your hunger: Wait to eat until your body feels the physical need.
  • Stop eating before you feel full: Stop as soon as you feel that you have satisfied your hunger a little. The feeling of fullness often lags, which is why we often eat too much and don’t feel the effects until it’s too late. 
  • Eat for the right reasons: Because you are hungry, not because you are stressed, angry, sad, or bored.
  • Stop eating by reflex: Identify the feelings that lead you to unnecessary snacking and intentionally pick something that you will do instead. If you eat when you’re bored, decide to clean or go for a bike ride or walk the next time you get bored. If you try to fight the urge to snack while staying bored, it will be very tough. So find a way to stay busy!
  • Replace junk food snacks with healthy alternatives: Once you've "cleaned out" your pantry, fill it with fruits, vegetables, and nuts. There are great recipes for wheat and sugar-free baking that you can make so that you can satisfy your craving in a healthier way. It will also help fight the boredom that often leads to poor eating choices in the first place. 

  

TOO MANY HIGH SUGAR, PROCESSED JUNK FOODS

Frequently eating double cheeseburgers and fries then drinking an oversized soda or milkshake will increase your waistline and may lead to other food-related health problems, such as heart disease and diabetes. Trans fats, often found in fast food, increase "bad" cholesterol and blood fats that contribute to hardening of the arteries, as well as inflammation, which causes fatty plaque to build up in the artery walls.

How can we address this habit?

  • Opt for a slow withdrawal: Don’t think that because you can’t cut out all the bad stuff 100% that it’s not worth starting. A few good choices lead to a few more, then a few more… Before you know it it becomes much easier and you’re feeling much better!
  • Make a healthier substitution: Replace soda with coffee or a glass of water, hamburgers with grilled chicken or French fries with a salad.
  • Plan your meals in  advance: You can avoid poor eating choices much of the time by simply planning in advance so that your meals are ready when you know you will be hungry. If you don’t plan and then need to grab something in a hurry, you’ll likely make a choice you won’t be happy with later. 

 

TOO MUCH ALCOHOL

We all like to have a drink, for any variety of seemingly innocuous reasons. But just like many things, drinking too much and too often can ruin other progress you may be making and have serious health consequences. Women who regularly drink two or more drinks a day and men who regularly drink three or more drinks a day run a higher risk of liver damage, cancer (liver, mouth, etc.), high blood pressure, and depression. Women, who are more sensitive to alcohol, can also develop heart disease, bone fragility, and even memory loss. 

How can we address this habit? 

  • Set healthy limits: Try to stick to two or fewer drinks and avoid the habit of having a drink every day. Find other alternatives that can help take the place of the simple habit of having an alcoholic drink, such as a cold club soda and lime. 
  • Drink alcohol only with food: This often leads to drinking slower and consuming less than drinking without food. 
  • Drink for pleasure, not to get drunk: Ultimately we should all avoid drinking to escape. We need to find healthier and better ways to deal with reality than something as temporary as alcohol. 

 

SMOKING CIGARETTES

Very few habits on Earth are as harmful to health as smoking. It is directly responsible for 30% of deaths from heart disease, 30% of deaths from cancer, and 80-90% of all lung cancers, not to mention the increased risk of cancers of the mouth, throat, and bladder. This habit dramatically increases the risk of heart attack, stroke, and high blood pressure, and triggers or aggravates respiratory problems such as bronchitis and asthma attacks. 

How can we address this habit?

  • Treat it as a harmful addiction and not simply a habit: Before you stop, prepare yourself for some difficult days. You are likely to experience withdrawal symptoms after the last cigarette so proactively develop a strategy, form a support team, and have a plan B in case your method doesn't work.
  • Talk to your doctor about quit smoking medications: Studies have shown that certain medications can increase the chance of success.
  • Find support: Enlist the help of friends and family. Counselors, helplines, and support groups can also help.
  • Choose the right time: Quit smoking during a quiet time - not during the holidays or when you are under a lot of stress.

 

 

Ready to get in some great workouts at home?

Receive our Burn Plus 30-Day Fitness Guide Free

 

 

 

Our objectives with these lifestyle adjustments aren’t ultimately one of heaping judgment health upon ourselves. It is out of a desire to maintain movement in a positive direction that will better our ability to enjoy life daily. The goal should be to simply take an objective and honest look at our habits and determine whether there are incremental changes that we can make in order to achieve great overall gains. It is at that point that we can make meaningful changes. 

 

Yes, it will take effort and there will be difficult moments. You probably won't succeed immediately. But this isn’t about the immediate and that’s the beauty of it; freeing us of unrealistic expectations. It’s about continually improving during this journey. The obstacles that bring the greatest enjoyment, once overcome, are the ones that require consistency and determination to overcome the most difficult moments. 

 

One thing is for sure: You are absolutely capable of doing it! The question is, will you?


Older Post

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

RECEIVE OUR 30-DAY FITNESS GUIDE

Yours Free

And 5% Off 1st Order

RECEIVE OUR 30-DAY FITNESS GUIDE

Yours Free

& 5% off Your 1st Order

Ready to get in great workouts at home?

  • Warm Ups
  • Meal Planning
  • Daily Workouts
  • Tips

RECEIVE OUR
30-DAY FITNESS GUIDE

Yours Free

&

5% off

Your 1st Order

Ready to get in great workouts at home?

  • Warm Ups
  • Meal Planning
  • Daily Workouts
  • Tips

Free Detox Guide & 5% Discount