Did you know that less than 3% of Americans are currently living a healthy lifestyle? While this is an unfortunate statistic, it’s true. If you aren’t putting in an effort to develop and maintain a healthy body and mind, you likely will fall under this number. This puts you at risk of developing both mental and physical health issues.
Luckily, with a bit of work, it’s completely possible to live a healthy lifestyle. Read on for some tips on how you can focus on both physical fitness and stress relief so that you can become a more healthy man inside and out!
Set Realistic Fitness Goals
Before beginning a new fitness regimen, it’s important that you set some realistic fitness goals. Washboard abs aren’t healthy or attainable for every man, and that’s completely okay. Healthy bodies come in all shapes and sizes, and it’s important that you accept yourself for the cool guy that you are.
Fitness goals should be oriented toward becoming healthy rather than bodybuilding. Understand what’s driving your goal and decide on the way that you define success. Make your goals measurable and specific while developing a realistic time frame that they can be attained in.
Eat the Right Foods
One of the most important parts of fitness is eating right. Men should be eating 2 cups of fruit and 2.5 cups of vegetables each day to get the right amount of fiber. These healthy foods also give you the appropriate vitamins and minerals needed to boost metabolism and combat mental health issues.
Replace white bread and pasta with whole grains. White starch converts straight to sugar when metabolized and has no real nutritional value. You also will want to swap red meats out for leaner ones like poultry and fish, which experts say you should get at least 3 servings of each week.
Exercise the Right Way
Before you can begin exercising, it’s a good idea to drink a protein shake. After that, stretch your muscles out appropriately to combat cramping. Men are generally less flexible than women are, and stretching will also help you to build the flexibility that you need to thrive in the gym.
You should work out between 3 and 5 times a week for 1-2 hour intervals. Note that these sessions should include multiple breaks for cooling down and ensuring that you’re remaining hydrated. Make sure that you take a break from workouts at least every 2 days so that your muscles have time to heal and reform in a stronger, healthier way.
Consider varying your exercises throughout the week to work all muscles and tissue groups. Weight lifting, cardio exercises like treadmills, and leg days are all important to holistic fitness.
Additionally, attaining your fitness goals will make it easier to improve your sexual health. You can read more here about the connection between these two aspects of your life.
Try Breathing Exercises
Breathing exercises are a wonderful way to boost both your physical and mental health at once. These exercises improve the flow of oxygen to your brain and increase calm. This increases energy, immunity, and positive feelings as well as making you sleep better at night.
For a guided breathing exercise, this video provides an awesome visual. You can follow along with the expansion and compression of the triangle while watching its calming movements. This is a surefire way to relieve stress and foster a healthy mind.
Not only will you feel more relaxed as a result of these exercises, but you reduce muscle tension and allow your joints to ease up. This lowers the risk of joint problems later in life. The relaxation also decreases your blood pressure, so doing breathing exercises regularly can reduce your risk of blood clots and stroke.
Do Something Relaxing
Doing something that relaxes you each day is critical for your mental health. Drinking a nice cup of herbal tea before bedtime forces your mind and body to relax. This is definitely something that you should look into, so try chamomile, floral, mint, and fruit options to find a tea that you like.
While this might make you roll your eyes, reading a good book also is proven to decrease stress. There’s a novel out there for everyone, so look online and find a genre that you like. Reading for half an hour before bed is a great way to rest your mind before falling asleep.
Taking a hot bath is also a wonderful way to relax. Many men believe that this is a ‘feminine’ activity, but it absolutely isn’t. Baths reduce the tension in your muscles and make sure that you loosen up and feel better, which is the perfect way to calm both your mind and body after vigorous exercise. If you want to go all out, there are natural bath oils/bombs that are specifically made for men!
Talk to Mental Health Professionals
There’s a huge misconception that therapy makes you weak, but this isn’t the case at all. Everyone can benefit from therapy in some form or another- it helps you to become more in tune with your emotions and react in appropriate ways to every situation.
Working with a professional can help you to develop your mind and body in ways that you wouldn’t even have thought of on your own! These experts have a variety of exercises and tools that they can use to benefit you as an individual.
Develop a Healthy Body and Mind Today
Now that you know how to foster both a healthy body and mind, it’s time to get some motivation for putting your health first. Check out the ‘shop’ tab on our home page to subscribe to ‘Fashionably Male’ magazine. Not only will you see men that have already attained the ultimate fitness goals, but you can read the tips and tricks that they used to get in shape.