Better Health Fitness From Inside Out. When I started writing about health more than 20 years ago, my columns focused primarily on the physical body a healthy diet, exercise, and disease detection were common topics.
But over the years, the health lessons that have stayed with me have not been about physical change. The greatest improvements in my own health and well-being come from the internal physical form. Inner fitness means focusing your energy on your emotional well-being and mental health instead of berating yourself about your diet, weight, or not getting enough exercise.
Better Health Fitness From Inside Out
It can include mindfulness and meditation techniques, a gratitude routine, or a variety of other practices. This inside-out approach to health can also lead to changes in your physical well-being. Research shows, for example, that mindfulness can lower blood pressure, improve sleep, lead to better eating habits, and reduce chronic pain.
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During what hour or two of each day do you feel best? Your most energetic? Your most productive? Now ask yourself: Who gets those hours? Chances are, you’re spending those highly productive hours on the demands of work, paying bills, checking emails, or managing household needs. But now that you’ve identified the time of day when you feel your best, try to give yourself that time, advises Jack Gropper, an executive trainer and professor of exercise and sports science at Judson University in Elgin, Illinois.
Fitness From Inside Out Better Health
For me, this advice has been transformative. Giving yourself your best time each day to focus on your personal goals and values is the best way to take care of yourself. Katy Milkman, a Wharton professor and author of How to Change, has studied the science of new beginnings, which she calls the fresh start effect.
She and her colleagues discovered that we are more inclined to make significant changes in our lives around “temporal landmarks,” those points in time that we naturally associate with new beginnings. New Year’s Day is the most obvious temporary milestone in our lives, but birthdays, the beginning of spring, the start of the school year, or a new job are temporary milestones that create psychological opportunities for lasting change.
Be generous. OurGenorosity benefits our bodies and minds in many ways.
Pay attention. Good things happen, especially when we pay attention. “Affect labeling” is a way of identifying your feelings by naming them. This can result in calming your brain and reducing stress.
Find your calm. Does anxiety take over you often? Find out how you can calm your mind and ease that anxious feeling. For example, you might consider brushing your teeth or having a cup of coffee in the morning as mindful moments in your daily activities.
Treat yourself to the best hours of the day. What time of day do you feel best? When do you feel most energetic or productive? Give yourself that hour or two every day.
As I leave The Times to start anew, the hardest part is leaving you, the readers, who have been so supportive and asked so many intelligent questions over the years. It is your curiosity and your skepticism that has pushed me to understand more about what it really means to be healthy, both on the outside and on the inside.