Why create a personal health plan? Many facets of our lives need investment — from our finances to our career path. Undoubtedly, one of the most important aspects in life is to focus on health. After all, maintaining good health will allow you to enjoy all the other factors in your life, such as good food, entertainment, and quality time with loved ones.
According to market research from 2021, the health food industry is seeing rapid growth due to the growing adoption of healthy eating habits, as well as a general urge to become more healthy.
Another reason that the healthy food market is on a rise is that more people are creating personalized health plans for a more tailored approach to staying healthy. Today, we’ll look at the essentials of a personal health plan and how you can stick to your new plan.
What you Should Include in Your Personal Health Plan
These 3 elements are essential components of a personal health plan. They will set you up for success and allow you to take control of your health and wellbeing.
Working diet into your health plan will act as the backbone of your health journey. Increasing your intake of healthy food items and meals will positively impact other aspects of your life, such as getting enough energy to work, travel, or exercise, as well as improving your cognitive functions. Take inspiration from existing weight loss and fitness plans and how these work.
The WeightWatchers program, in particular, supports their customized plans with tools: barcode scanners for grocery shopping, a restaurant database, and trackers for food, water, activity, sleep, and weight. While different apps serve different purposes depending on your goal, it’s important that you start with one and adjust your diet goals and parameters according to your needs.
It will also help to become more proactive in modifying your diet, starting with listing down the list of healthy restaurants you may want to try, for example, or incorporating healthy foods that make you feel full such as apples or avocado.
Being more proactive with your dietary decisions will help you become more mindful about eating while being aware that your overall health doesn’t depend solely on diet.
Instead of taking on harsh cardio workouts that could be overwhelming or even result in injury for you, you can start small. In fact, short workouts in the form of three one-minute bursts of vigorous activity daily have been associated with having a longer life.
You can start with home workouts that require little to no equipment like bodyweight exercises and squats. You can also explore options such as yoga, Pilates or HIIT workouts that you can do at home. With the right attitude and motivation, you can achieve great results with your home workouts.
Starting small will also help build the routine you need to keep the healthy habit going instead of being demotivated after the first week or month. Once your body is familiar with the light exercises, you can opt to mix in more advanced workout routines depending on what you need and want for your body, such as core exercises if you’re trying to build strength or arm and leg workouts if you’re more focused on growing and maintaining your muscles.
The joy of having a personalized health plan is that your exercises should be tailored to you and what you want for your body instead of blindly following workout routines that may be detrimental to your body or condition.
Finally, getting adequate and good quality sleep is an often overlooked aspect of pursuing health. People often feel the pressure to make the most of their twenty-four hours a day, not wanting to “waste” time by sleeping.
However, getting poor sleep for long periods of time may lead to health conditions and inconveniences that may hinder your health journey — like being too fatigued to exercise or resorting to junk food to keep yourself awake during work. In fact, according to a study on sleep-related problems, only 10% of older adults reported discussing sleep with healthcare professionals.
Meanwhile, more than 20% would often discuss diet and exercise. An important part of crafting your personalized health plan is that it relies on a balance of multiple factors instead of aiming to restrict your dietary habits or enforce strict workout routines.
At the end of the day, balancing a nutritious diet with regular exercise and adequate sleep will benefit you and your body more than any viral health trend.
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4 Steps to Take Before You Start your Health Plan
1. Set Goals: A key step to creating a personal health plan is setting realistic goals. Start by understanding where you currently stand in terms of physical and mental health, and set achievable milestones that you can focus on over the course of time. Make sure your goals are measurable and attainable, so that it’s easier to track your progress and celebrate your successes.
2. Create a Schedule: Once you have identified your goals, create a schedule that aligns with those objectives. Whether you’re aiming to exercise more or eat healthier foods, make sure you plan out the steps so that it becomes easier to stay on track. For example, if you want to eat more vegetables, make sure you plan out exactly when and where to buy groceries, as well as which recipes to make.
3. Track Your Progress: Tracking your progress is key for staying motivated on your health journey. Whether it’s through a fitness tracker or a journal, keeping tabs on how far you’ve come can offer a much-needed boost of confidence.
4. Find Support: Lastly, don’t forget to seek out support from those around you. Whether it’s a friend, family member, or health coach, having someone to lean on can help you stay on track and offer valuable insight when needed.
Creating your personal health plan can be a fun and rewarding experience. With the right goals, schedule, and support system in place, you’ll have a much better chance of living a healthier lifestyle and reaping the benefits.