Don't Shoot Yourself in the Foot

You want to look good. You want to feel good. Who doesn't, right?

You know what makes you look and feel good. No, it's not a weekend in Vegas, smoking and drinking until 3 AM while losing your entire life savings. And it's not drugs or plastic surgery, either.

Looking good and feeling good both come from good health. And you know how to achieve good health. So why do you continue to shoot yourself in the foot?

Let's look at all the things you already know:

1) SLEEP! You can't look or feel your best on less-than-optimal sleep. Sleeping your life away might seem boring, but staying up till the wee hours partying will play havoc with your immune system, raise your cortisol levels, and make it near impossible to lose weight. Sure, you might be having fun at first, but how fun is it to be constantly sick, overweight, low energy, and stressed out?

2) WATER! Yes, water is the dullest drink on earth. But also the most vital! Staying well hydrated helps every organ and system in your body function properly. Even slight dehydration can thicken the blood, stress the heart, and exert a negative effect on all the other muscles. Your skin will look dewy and fresh when you are fully hydrated, too. Other beverages (like colas, coffee, tea, and alcoholic drinks) tend to make the body excrete more water, which is the opposite of what we need!

3) WHOLE FOODS! If I asked you what a healthy diet looked like, I'm sure you could tell me. Even young children know which foods are good for them. In general, the less refined foods you consume, the better. (Corn on the cob=whole food. Corn chips=refined food.) Whole foods retain more of their natural fiber, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other nutrients. Whole foods nourish your whole body, including your gut biome--where the good bacteria live. If you want to look good, feel good, and get sick less, you need to promote those good bacteria!

4) MOVEMENT! I'm not even talking about "exercise" here, although exercise is obviously fantastic for your health. But just getting up off the couch--or desk chair or driver's seat--is crucial. We have all heard that sitting is the new smoking. Really, it is inactivity. Our bodies were designed to move, all day long, every day. The people who live the longest, and healthiest, lives are those who move around the most, like sheepherders in Sardinia and fishermen in Okinawa, Japan. If you hate to "exercise," try finding some other activity that keeps you moving: gardening, swimming, kayaking, paddleboarding, playing with your kids or grandkids, walking the dog.

5) NATURE! Scientists are constantly learning new facts about how our bodies interact with elements in nature to keep us healthier. We benefit from contact with soil, sand, sea, grass, and forest. Kids who get dirty, live on farms, and come in contact with animals tend to be healthier, get sick less, and have fewer allergies. We get our Vitamin D from the sun. Green spaces help us relax and destress. To be healthier, to look and feel better, get outside and soak up some nature!

You may have great intentions, but do you end up shooting yourself in the foot on a regular basis? Do you spend endless hours sitting behind a computer instead of digging in the garden or hiking up a mountain? Do you skip your exercise class but never skip happy hour? Do you fight fatigue with soda and candy bars and end up feeling worse than ever?

Most of us know what to do to look and feel great. It's not rocket science! But many of us could still benefit from a coach. If you'd like some support for your journey toward a happier and healthier you, don't hesitate to get in touch.