“The secret of your future is hidden in your daily routines” Mike Murdock
I love routine! A daily routine has helped me throughout life to focus on my career, family, and my health. I’ve been in the health and fitness industry for over thirty years, and now that I’m in my sixties -and an empty nester, I find it’s even more important to prioritize my physical and mental health.
Routine helps to establish discipline, which is necessary when adhering to an exercise routine, sticking to a healthy diet, and prioritizing mental health.
I’ve developed a well rounded routine that helps to promote flexibility, strength, good eating habits, and maximizes brain health.
- Intermittent fasting: Studies show that intermittent fasting can help reduce inflammation, improve brain health, and increase metabolism. There are many types of fasting such as fasting a couple of days a week, or choosing a window of time throughout the day for fasting and eating. I like the 16:8 method. This practice involves a eating window of 8 hours throughout the day and a fasting period of 16 hours. Most people start their fast in the evening so that part of it is done while sleeping. This makes fasting much easier to tolerate. I simply stop eating at 7:30 pm and fast until 11:30 am most days of the week.
- Hydration: Water is key to improving your health, promoting healthy digestion and metabolism. It’s also vital to prevent dehydration and improve energy levels. I always start the day with a full glass of water upon arising and have water with all my meals. Committing to a routine makes it easy to stay hydrated without having to think about it.
3. Exercise: Exercise needs to be a priority. Your eating and sleeping habits can promote health or disease; it’s all in your daily routine. There is no time like the present to clean up your diet. Start to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into all your meals and snacks. Once you develop a habit, it becomes easy. The same goes with exercise. Walking requires no expensive gym membership or equipment. So get out each day and enjoy the sunshine and get some exercise. Walking promotes healthy bones, metabolism, and improves your mood. Consider adding some daily stretches after your walk or check out some yoga videos on YouTube. There are so many free videos from fabulous instructors that offer beginner, intermediate, and advanced practices. Flexibility is important as you age to stay limber and avoid injury. Commit to at least 10 minutes of some sort of flexibility training each day.
4. Find a hobby that challenges your brain – Take up a new hobby to stimulate your brain and promote better brain health. Consider jigsaw puzzles, starting a blog, or joining a book club. Anything to stimulate your brain on a frequent basis. Reading and puzzles improve connections in the brain and improve memory and concentration.
5. Have vegetables and salad with your meals everyday! Eating healthy and getting the right nutrients is vital for brain health and to prevent disease. Consider having at least two servings of vegetables and a salad with one or two meals everyday. Eating junk and processed foods promotes inflammation that can lead to heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and has even been linked to dementia.
Establish a routine that fits your lifestyle and you’ll see how it promotes discipline in your life. This will help you improve your overall health and wellbeing and also ensure a better quality of life.