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Fitness- harvesting the wealth of health
13 Jan 2022
Fitness- harvesting the wealth of health image

In simple terms, fitness is the state of being the proud owner of a healthy body and a sound mind. It is a term most commonly seen on our New Year resolutions list – only to be abandoned ten days into January. Why is it so hard for us to stick to our fitness goals? The answer is that it’s time-consuming and it’s hard work. But it doesn’t have to be. 

Physical fitness is about toning up the muscles and strengthening the bones of our body. But that’s not all it’s about. It also energizes the body and is effective in bringing about a positive outlook on life. 

Similarly, the benefits of being fit on the mental front are remarkable too. It helps equip us to handle disappointments and defeats gracefully. The therapeutic value of fitness cannot be underestimated

Fitness is a habit that needs to be cultivated and a skill that needs to be honed. Therefore, to quote Maya Angelou “Nothing will work unless you do”

Why should “Fitness” be on our list of goals?

The answer is simple – to make the best of life. In recent years we have seen an enormous increase in the number of people affected by lifestyle diseases. The easy availability of fast foods coupled with its affordability plays a huge role in this development. 

Obesity, Type II diabetes, heart diseases, and hypertension are some lifestyle diseases that affect plenty. The easiest way to keep these at bay is fitness. Studies have shown that regular physical activity prevents the onset of these diseases.

Enough said about the physical benefits of fitness, let’s talk about the mental benefits of fitness. Within two years, a tiny virus has introduced us to new levels of stress, anxiety, and depression. Exercising regularly has been proven to help reduce stress, increase motivation, improve mood and stimulate rest. In addition, exercise also promotes the release of endorphins – the happiness hormones.

Less is more….than enough

One of the major challenges faced while tackling fitness goals is the amount of effort it takes. Getting up early, heading to the gym, making it part of a busy life – it is not easy. Most importantly, the fact remains that a gym membership is not the only way to achieve fitness. Consequently, here are some small, no-cost changes you can adopt 

  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator at your workplace
  • If the destination is less than a mile from your house, walk, or cycle there
  • Set reminders to not sit for long at a desk
  • Avoid ordering snacks
  • If you crave snacks, walk to the store
  • Engage in a home improvement activity like gardening that requires physical activity
  • Eat only when you are hungry
  • Do squats or lunges for at least a minute a day

Above all, remember that small changes can make a big difference. Fitness is not always about how you do it, but about whether you do it or not.

A tech-savvy fitness journey

The 21st century graced us with technological advancements worthy of a sci-fi novel. Consequently, machines, algorithms, and sensors have taken a leap in the area of fitness too. A fitness journey supported by these is of superior quality and with an increased life span.

We have fitness bands that monitor heart rate, stress, oxygen saturation, sleep monitoring, and much, much more. Moreover, the bands have integrated themselves with the function of a watch. This has made it easy to blend fitness with your daily routine.

There are mobile apps that have been developed for the purpose of fitness. These are equipped with a pedometer – a step counter, activity tracking, BMI measurements, and monthly analysis. These help in making you aware of the areas you fall short of, highlighting your strengths, and so on. Considering that millennials are rarely without their phones, apps are truly a clever way to track fitness

If fitness is a lock, nutrition is key

Healthy eating goes a long way. A healthy, balanced diet helps you improve your health and lose weight. Here are a few things to keep in mind

  • Calorie requirements vary depending on age, gender and lifestyle. Make sure to use a calorie requirement calculator to find one tailored to your needs.
  • Breakfast is the most important meal in order to boost energy levels. Never skip breakfast.
  • Avoid empty calories – calories that provide very little energy. Most of our guilty pleasures like ice cream, cake, soda and pasta are, sadly, empty calories. Try limiting their intake to once a week
  • Carbs and protein-heavy meals help in providing high levels of energy. 
  • Don’t skip out on fibres. Fibre-rich foods like beans, whole grains, broccoli, dried fruits help normalize bowel movements, control blood sugar, and lower cholesterol levels.
  • Hydration is very important. Drinking at least two litres a day is crucial to a healthy diet

How to keep going?

Starting a fitness plan is the easy part. Keeping it going takes a lot of work. Losing motivation halfway is the most common reason why fitness goals are abandoned. Luckily, that is fixable.

Here are a few things you can do

  1. Define your goals. Write them down and pin them up where you can see it
  2. Set SMART – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time-based – goals
  3. Keep a journal to track your progress. Seeing how far you have come is a great motivator
  4. Celebrate mini-goals or certain milestones on the way
  5. Find support among family, friends and people who share your goals

Fitness as a way of life

So, in conclusion, fitness goals are an important part of growing as an individual. Although, one should keep in mind that health looks different for everyone. Being thin does not equate to healthy and being fat does not equate to unhealthy. It is important to be kind to yourself and others on a fitness journey. 

Know your limits, push your boundaries gently, and above all, keep in mind that you are doing this to be a better person. Stay strong, stay healthy and never give up on the quest of being healthy. The bottom line is, “stay motivated”. For that, you can make use of fitness programs such as FFounders.

-Niya Saliha KM

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