It’s the beginning of a new year, which means everybody is back in the gym to burn off the extra food and alcohol they consumed over Christmas. We’re all guilty of this, and it’s become a ritual for society today as nearly everybody is trying to eat healthily.
So, today we’re going to give you a helping hand and provide you with the knowledge needed to improve your physical health in 2023.
Exercising regularly is a proven method to improve your physical health. It may sound simple enough, but we can’t dispute the fact exercising is much tougher than you’d think; which is why so many people fall at the first hurdle of it. Statistics show that if you exercise consistently in the first 21 days then there is a great chance you will maintain this throughout the coming months till you reach your end goal. The main obstacle is getting through the first 3 weeks of exercising without any issues. This is arguably the biggest challenge people face as adjusting to exercise can be difficult, particularly if you’re completely new to it. This is where people can set themselves up for failure, as they can overdo it in the first few days as opposed to easing into it. This leads to feeling sore and exhausted and is more than enough to make them stop altogether.
So, the first step in this instance is to slowly ease yourself into an exercise routine that you enjoy and can do at least a few times a week. The main objective is to be consistent with exercising, as once you start getting into a routine of it, it starts integrating into your weekly schedule. By remaining consistent with it you will actually start enjoying exercising more and you’ll start feeling the effects of it too. After the first 21 days, you will start noticing changes in your body too, so no matter how difficult that first period will be; just think – in the grand scheme of things you’ve only got to wait a short amount of time before you begin seeing results. It’s less than a month!
If you welcome the challenge of exercising more frequently but you’re not sure what exercises to start with, then don’t worry we have you covered. If you’re relatively inactive, we would recommend starting with daily walks and possibly aiming to increase your distance or walking time each day. If you’re looking for more of a challenge or something a little different, maybe consider swimming or cycling – any way you can move your body brings huge benefits!
If 2023 is your time to start hitting the gym, here are some of our top tips to get you started. Let’s begin with stretching. Before every workout, it’s important you perform some dynamic stretches to loosen your muscles. We do this as it prepares the body for the high-intensity movements it’s about to face. A great piece of equipment you can use to stretch is a resistant band. You can incorporate this before every workout and throughout the day too. We highly recommend you use this to stretch your shoulders, as it can help enormously with your posture. This is ideal if you work in an office and you’re constantly hunched over your desk – you will be surprised how quickly you start seeing your shoulders push back in a good position!
Once you’ve finished stretching, your workout begins. Whenever you’re doing cardio or lifting weights you must always start from the bottom and work your way up. Too often, newcomers at the gym rush to try to run the most and lift the heaviest weight; and it always results in failure. Remember what we said at the beginning of this section, ‘consistency is key’, and this is the standard rule of thumb every experienced gym member understands. So, take a piece of humble pie and start from the basics! It’s also important to stay safe and ensure you’re lifting with the correct form to avoid any injuries. If you’re a complete beginner, we’d recommend seeking the help of a personal trainer or researching exercise forms online.
Overall, by continuously exercising throughout the week, you will slowly get better at working out. As soon as you get the hang of it you can start increasing the intensity and then the results really start showing.
Be consistent with a balanced diet
Whilst exercising is renowned for improving your physical and mental health, eating a healthy balanced diet is possibly much greater for you physically and mentally, as it can do wonders for your body. By implementing healthy foods in your diet you will start feeling the effects quicker than you would be exercising.
Typically, the best place to start is to incorporate more ‘green’ food into your diet. If you’re not aware of what this is, it’s green vegetables such as cabbage, sprouts, broccoli, green beans and so on ; all of which contain zero fat and they’re full of important nutrients our body needs – such as fibre. If you can consume a big portion of vegetables such as these in your daily diet you are already ahead of everyone else. Loading up on vegetables with each meal will help to fill you up, promote weight loss and also keep your body satisfied and curb unhealthy cravings.
Pair your vegetables with a protein source such as lean meat, dairy, eggs or lentils to help keep you fuller for longer and speed up your recovery process after exercise.
Whilst it’s important to eat healthily, it’s also vital you include the foods you enjoy within your diet; hence the term ‘balanced diet’. If you head straight into a clean diet without eating your favourite foods in moderation then you’re unlikely to stick to it for a long period of time. Try incorporating a small treat each day to help you avoid falling off track at the weekend and undoing all of your hard work.
Avoid unnecessary hand & wrist injuries
Next on our list to improve your physical health this year is to avoid unnecessary hand and wrist injuries. We can’t stress enough about how vital our hands and wrists are in our daily life. We rely on these two body functions for almost everything and it’s crucial we take good care of them. If you set out on your 2023 health journey without knowing what you’re doing, , this could lead to damaging your hand and wrist. For example, if you’re exercising at a high intensity and you’re putting too much pressure on your wrist i.e. bending it too much, this can result in a wrist fracture. Also, when you’re preparing food for a meal it’s important you keep close attention to what you’re doing as many hand and wrist injuries can occur in the kitchen.
Take care of your mental health
A major issue which is becoming more and more pivotal in today’s society is taking care of your mental health. If you don’t prioritise your mental well-being on a regular basis it can lead to significant problems in the future, such as increased stress and anxiety. We understand how difficult it can be to seek support for your mental health, as maybe your pride might be getting the best of you, or maybe you’re afraid to speak out; either way please know there are people ready to help you!
There are a number of steps you can take to help remove unwanted pressures on your mental state. Firstly, connecting with friends and family on a regular basis can be a major mental health boost, as you can use the opportunity to discuss anything that’s troubling you. Also, you can use this as a way of destressing too, as you could go out for the day and do something you love.
Furthermore, managing how much sleep you have daily is a crucial step you can take to help your mental state. Our bodies need a certain amount of sleep each night to help us get through the day, and it’s important we give our body what it needs! On the topic of giving what your body needs, we’ve said it once, and we will say it again, but exercising and eating healthy offers a great mental boost as you will be focusing on yourself which releases endorphins in the body. When your body starts feeling good – you feel great mentally!
In conclusion, if you’re struggling with your mental health and you need something simple to help such as talking to someone. There are many places you can turn to that will help you. We want you to live life to the fullest, so don’t be afraid to seek help today.
We hope you enjoyed reading our latest article on how to improve your physical health in 2023. If you like any of our suggestions or you’re unsure about a couple of them, get in touch with us today!
Alternatively, if you’re suffering from a hand and wrist injury and you’re looking for a quick diagnostic, get in touch with us today for more information.