Most people know good diet and moderate exercise greatly help you stay healthy. Nevertheless, many of us are not so successful to eat well and exercise regularly. The idea is good but not so practical in our busy life with various activities.
But, before you give it up, why don’t you try these simple things?
1. Drink water in the morning
Around 60~70% of our body is made up of water. Good quality water intake should have a great impact on our body.
I found drinking a cup of water first thing in the morning is much easier to make it habit than carrying a water bottle. Don’t worry about drinking ‘a lot of’ water in the beginning. Just focus on a few mouthful of water every morning. Small amount regularly is more important than large amount occasionally.
Goal: Drink 500~750cc of cold water every morning when you get up.
- Start from a small amount (half a cup or so). It will take less than a minute total to finish several mouthful of water. Take a mouthful between your regular morning routines.
- Start from whatever temperature you like. I started from hot water that is comforting in a chilly morning.
- Set a reminder nearby what you see first in the morning. Put a note in the bathroom to remind drinking water, keep a bottle of water right beside your alarm clock, keep a glass right in front of your coffee maker, etc.
- Once the small amount of water every morning becomes your habit, get up 10 to 20 minutes earlier. I know it’s hard, but try to pull you out of bed just 10 minutes earlier. Instead of running around with your water in your mouth, sit and drink using the extra time. Remind yourself that the extra 10 minutes is specifically made to sit and drink the first water of the day. Just 10 minutes.
- Increase the amount of water bit by bit. Shift from warm to cold water gradually. You may find you now happily enjoy the quiet time with a glass of water every morning.
2. Deep breathing
Deep breathing is a great exercise which we definitely overlook. You can do it anywhere, anytime.
Goal: Have a deep breath as many times as possible through a day (ideally 30 times or more).
- Start from exhaling (not inhaling). Slowly breathe out as much as you can. Feel your muscle around your belly, back, shoulders and buttock pushing the air out completely.
- Then let go. You inhale without any effort. Recover your breath. Repeat exhale, inhale and recovery.
- Easy to do when you are in bed (before and after your sleep) but you can do it anywhere, anytime. Do it when you are waiting on the line at a grocery store, riding a bus or train, stopping at the traffic light, etc.
If it is overwhelming to you to drink 2L of water every day or having 2 hours exercise a few times a week, start from these small things. The point is to keep doing. Once these become your habit, it will be much easier to improve the quantity and quality of the activity while you start feeling the difference those healthy routines make over you.
A small yet certain change is the great step toward the larger goal.