5 Simple Ways to Get Your Heart Health Back on Track
Despite our best intentions, we all struggle with prioritizing our health sometimes. It usually starts out subtly and insidiously – a couple of extra late nights here, a few too many glasses of wine there, the return of the 3pm candy bar, and before you know it, you feel well and truly off track. This is a normal occurrence, especially given the busyness and stress so many of us experience in our modern lives.
The trick is to nip this little bad patch in the butt as soon as you become aware that you’re no longer living in alignment with your ideals. Turn the downward spiral into a downward dog, so to speak!
Here are five things you can do straight away to get yourself back on track and restore the vitality to your life.
1.Pump up the goodness. If you’re currently getting too cozy with Mister Ben and Master Jerry, it can feel overwhelming to think of cutting out all that bad stuff cold turkey and going on a strict detox or deprivation diet. The easiest way to slide back into your good habits with grace and ease is to start pumping up the goodness on your plate. If you focus on adding green leafy vegetables, bright colored produced and fresh summer fruit to your meals, you will start to feel better straight away. Soon enough, this good stuff will start to crowd out all the junk, but for now, there’s no need to feel deprived or desperate.
2.Enlist help. Tell your partner or family or best friend that you’ve been struggling. Support is absolutely crucial in getting back on track. Having someone to open up to and trouble-shoot problems with will massively increase your chances of success. Then there’s that other big advantage: accountability. Unfortunately, it’s very easy to let ourselves down. But if you’ve promised your mom that you’ll chow down a salad for lunch each day, you’re more likely to get it done. If there’s no one in your life that you feel comfortable confiding in, that’s when you should seek out a qualified health coach who can guide and encourage you.
3.Stress less. Research is showing that chronically elevated cortisol – that all-important stress hormone – is even more harmful to our systems than we’ve previously thought. If your downward slide is accompanied by feelings of exhaustion, overwhelm and being ‘tired but wired’, you probably need to address your cortisol levels. Start by cutting back on the caffeine and getting to bed by 10pm each night. Yoga is excellent too.
4.Get outside and get active. Exercise is such an excellent mood improver. Commit to getting outside and getting moving every day this week. It only needs to be for as little as 20 minutes. Do whatever it is you need to do to get it done – whether it’s a lunch time walk between meetings, setting your alarm clock half an hour early each day, or keeping your sneakers in the car to take advantage of spontaneous strolling opportunities.
5.Cut yourself some slack. The worst thing you can do right now is get down on yourself for falling off the health wagon. What’s done is done, and beating yourself up will only increase your stress levels and make you feel worse. Instead, acknowledge that this is an opportunity to start making some changes and to start looking after yourself better. Ultimately, you’re going to come out of this experience with a deeper understanding of yourself and a renewed appreciation for how important our health truly is. So let go of your so-called shortcomings in the past few weeks (or months, or years) and focus on the abundance of opportunities you have to create health in the present.
If you employ these simple strategies, you will find yourself brimful of health and vitality in no time. Remember, every journey begins with a single step. So look forward, smile at the beauty all around you and start stepping!
Rosemarie Beltz is a Certified Cardiac Perfusionist , Health Consultant and the creator & director of the Heart Health Concierge, a prestige health coaching service offering heart-smart health advice to clients all around the world. As a practicing cardiac perfusionist and certified health coach, she is uniquely positioned to bridge the gap between the world of western medicine and holistic health. You can connect with Rosemarie at the Heart Health Concierge [www.rosemariebeltz.com] and on facebook at [https://www.facebook.com/hearthealthconcierge?ref=hl].