36.5% of adults in the United States are obese. And another 32.5% of adults fall into the category of overweight. These are absurdly high numbers! Indeed, it is admirable to put in long hours in pursuit of professional success. But this glory should not come at the expanse of your health.
Though sustaining solid fitness when your schedule is jam-packed and stress levels are through the roof might seem tough, sticking to the following tips will ensure you accomplish this lofty objective:
Also Read: 6 TIPS TO COPE WITH EXAM STRESS
1. Prioritize Sleep
Usually, sleep is not the first thing that comes to our mind when considering the many factors that can influence our weight. Good sleep, however, has been closely linked to successfully keeping the pounds off. In addition to nutrition and exercise, how much sleep you get can make a big difference when it comes to your fitness goals.
Most adults in their twenties and thirties benefit from getting between seven and eight hours of sleep every night. Teenagers, on the other hand, need nine to ten hours of sleep per night to maintain proper health. Lowering your meal proportions in the hours leading up to bed can improve your sleep quality big time. Additionally, keep your sleeping area dark as nighttime light exposure can make it harder to nod off. Consider using various tools (earplugs, blackout curtains, etc.) that can help you set up an optimal sleeping environment.
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2. Replace Screen Time With Workout Time
A fair proportion of professionals lament that they do not have enough time to get in shape. But how many hours a day do you actually spend staring at screens? If you are like most people, an honest answer would be “quite a bit”. Statistically speaking, the average American spends 142 minutes daily (2 hours and 22 minutes, to be exact) on various social media platforms.
We can all afford to trade in 30 to 45 minutes of screen time for some physical activity. Rather than sitting and aimlessly scrolling through Twitter or Facebook, try standing and lunging 2, 3, 4 as you browse, or engage in a squat challenge while watching your favorite show. In this way, you may incorporate exercise into your daily routine without abandoning any of your other activities.
Also, walking around the block to your favorite peppy soundtrack for 20 to 30 minutes before settling in to make supper is a great way to replace TV time (or phone-in-hand) with something more productive. Regardless of how you get started establishing that habit, the key is to always keep your fitness objective in mind and strive toward it.
3. Stay Hydrated
Dehydration paves the way for decreased productivity, a rise in the hormones associated with stress, and the adoption of unhealthy eating habits. That is why you should stay on top of hydration. The term “hydration” refers to the practice of encouraging water to replenish the body’s fluid levels.
Experts suggest that the average woman should consume roughly 12 cups of water each day, while men should consume approximately 16 cups. When you have a lot on your plate as a working professional, it could be challenging to drink that much water every day. Luckily, there are a few hacks that will help you to hit this target regularly. For example, make sure you always have water on your desk. Keeping a water bottle on your desk can serve as a friendly reminder to drink up. This is the ideal approach for office workers to keep themselves hydrated throughout the day. If you suffer from headaches caused by eye strain, keeping up with the optimal water intake may help.
That said, consuming plain water is not the only option for hydration. You may give it a delicious twist by adding mint, cucumber, lemon, and strawberries to it. Alternatively, you could also drink vegetable and fruit juices.
4. Leverage Meal Prepping
In most cases, busy professionals do not consciously opt for less healthy eating options. It is just that munching less nutritious meals seem more convenient at the time, so they go with them. That is where meal prepping can make a big difference. Meal prepping entails cooking in bulk once or twice a week and eating them for lunch (or dinner) all week long. In other words, you will be able to eat the foods you love, but in controlled portions that will not leave you feeling stuffed. Having a variety of nutritionally sound meals on hand will also assist in achieving your dietary objectives.
It bears worth mentioning that maintaining a consistent routine is essential for successful meal prepping. Having a set schedule for going grocery shopping and preparing meals will help you get into a groove. A typical Sunday morning could be set aside for food purchasing and preparation. A second option is to prepare weekday meals on Monday nights. You get to set the timetable, and it should work with your standard week. Choosing and keeping to set times will streamline your decision-making, giving you more mental bandwidth to focus on other things.
To give you a better idea, we are listing some of the best meal-prep dishes:
- Korean ground beef bowl
- Mediterranean chickpea salad
- Rainbow pasta salad
- Tofu stir-fry
- Kale and white bean power bowls
5. Get Moving On Your Next Date
We have entered the age when we make our own rules. Unlike in the past, dates could be more casual and fun than the traditional fine dining outing. When it comes to connecting with a girl/boy in your life, there is nothing wrong with a classic night that consists of dinner, drinks, and a movie. But what if you shifted your perspective just a tiny bit?
If you want to truly wow your date, consider an outing where the two of you go trekking in a scenic area. If you are both the competitive type and like to try new things, you may even try rock climbing indoors. How about going for a dip at the beach? It is a lot of fun and a great workout to hang on to the love of your life while you ride out the enormous waves. That way, you will both benefit from the release of feel-good endorphins and doing something together that is more physically demanding than a standard dinner and a movie date.
6. Get A Helping Hand
At 5 a.m., it is hard to get yourself going. You will find a slew of excuses to give up, especially when the only person you have to answer to is yourself. Enter friends! Join a gym with friends (actual or virtual) who share your goals and encourage you to keep going.
Think of fitness as a huge, heavy flat stone that might easily crush you if you were forced to lug it around on your own. On the other hand, if you and your training partners were the supporting pillars, encouraging and pushing each other to keep going, this stone would have a better chance of standing the test of time. Simply put, keeping everyone’s calendars on the same page will allow you to observe how much more productive team sessions can be. You will enjoy the time you get to spend with each other and working out like pros.
Staying fit as a busy professional can be a challenging endeavor. You may, however, maintain your physical health and fitness despite the constraints of your job schedule if you are well-versed with the appropriate advice and strategies. If you want to live a long, healthy, and happy life, try some of these fitness tips covered in this post.