1. Eating "Healthy" Doesn’t Have to be 24/7.
Regardless of what the diet or supplement industry says, you do not have to be a "perfect" eater all the time in order to live an overall healthy lifestyle. In fact, happier, healthier people have learned that there must be a certain amount of flexibility to your diet in order to stick to it as well as enjoy it.
The idea of a well-rounded diet means eating whole, healthful foods as much as you can - including a wide range of colorful fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. But it also means not demonizing certain foods or food groups. It means not avoiding things that you like simply because they are "processed" or thought of as "junk foods." Everything can have a place. The less food rules you put on yourself, the more likely you are to enjoy the way you eat.
2. Dieting is Generally Unsustainable.
Dieting is difficult, there's no doubt about it. Worse yet- for the most part, diets are an unsustainable means to an end. It is a far more reasonable endeavor to strive for an all-around healthy diet (see above) than it is to attempt to stick to an overly restrictive diet for any long period of time. In some cases, for the short-term, a diet can help you jumpstart the path to your goals (ie. weight loss, more energy, identifying food sensitivities, better sleep etc).
In these circumstances your best bet is to set yourself up for success as best you can. Buy, cook and prepare healthy options in advance and always have them within reach. But don’t count on a restrictive diet to be the way you’ll eat for the rest of your life.
3. Looking Good Doesn’t Always Equate To Feeling Good
Remember that the majority of what we see from fitness culture, especially on social media, is entirely aesthetics-based. But bodies that look good aren’t always necessarily the healthiest ones. It can be difficult to distinguish this through a computer or phone screen, but low-body fat and a six-pack aren’t defining factors of overall health.
In fact, oftentimes it can be the exact opposite, as low-body fat percentages are extremely difficult for most people to maintain and can result in poor food and/or social relationships. Keep in mind that for yourself, health is not about how you look but about how you feel: your energy levels, your moods, your sleeping patterns, and your overall life satisfaction is what matters most!
4. Workouts Are Not The Be-All and End-All of a Wellness Routine
Wellness happens in all the little moments of your day. You might only be getting to the gym (or doing a home workout) 2-3 times a week, but there are many other times you can practice wellness. For overall health, focus on stress-relieving techniques (whatever they might be for you), on getting quality sleep each night, on a diet full of healthful foods, and on your emotional and mental well-being.
Physical activity is important, of course, but it doesn’t always need to look like 45 minutes to an hour doing a gym workout. Walking, stretching, yoga, and mobility exercises are all ways to keep your body moving in the name of health. Wellness is an all encompassing entity and sometimes, you will want to focus on one aspect more than others.
Keep these health truths in mind the next time you feel yourself falling into the all-or-nothing trap!
Keep steady, enjoy the journey and love yourself harder,