Whenever I go to the gym, I look around at everyone there, working out. I see people of all shapes and sizes on machines, lifting weights, running on the treadmill, using the rowing machine… And I wonder, are they healthy? Clearly many of them look great. Clearly many of them are muscular. But I can’t help but wonder if they are healthy. Does training implicitly identify health? I don’t know. But I do know that exercise is a key component of keeping healthy. It isn’t the only piece of the puzzle though.
What You Eat
The food you put in your mouth is arguably even more important than hitting the gym 5 times per week. All the weight lifting and running in the world won’t help if your sodium and sugar intake is excessive. And perhaps sodium is the main one to watch out for. Keeping your heart in good shape has a bit to do with exercise and a whole lot to do with what you eat - sodium being the most evil (despite so yummy) food.
And keeping sodium levels low isn’t easy at all!!! Late last year, I tried to keep sodium as low as possible in my diet and it was super difficult. Eating out was virtually impossible. Have you looked at the sodium levels in every single menu item at Boston Pizza!?!
How You Sleep
Exercise and Food is only two parts of the health triumvirate (so to speak). The third pillar, in my humble opinion, is inescapable yet so often overlooked – SLEEP! Yes, getting too little sleep is like shaving days off your life, one by one. In recent years, study after study have indicated the importance of sleep to a healthy body. And please don’t forget how sleep makes us feel incredibly less grumpy. Sleep cleanses the mind, rebuilds muscle, helps the immune system and gives us good dreams. Get your 7.5 hours or preferably more every night and watch your kids have children and then watch your grand children have their own…
So Exercise for sure, but please stay healthy… Eat healthy… Sleep healthy.