You only get one body!

Woman and man running on the Brooklyn bridge

When I was 20-something, I could work a night shift, go home, do all kinds of stuff, catch a nap in the afternoon and go back in and work another night shift. Stopped being able to do that a long time ago. And just as well. Because, it was never a good idea.

Look at a cat or dog. They take every opportunity to catch some shut eye. They play hard and they sleep hard.

Thing is, as humans, we’re not so good at taking care of ourselves. Many times business owners and entrepreneurs are even worse. We tell ourselves all kinds of fibs about why we need to burn the candle at both ends, getting up before the crack of dawn and staying up late.

We skip breakfast, grab fast-food for lunch, and eat packaged food for supper. We drink gallons of coffee or other sweet drinks.

Exercise? Don’t have time!

Maybe I’m not speaking for all of us, but I know of a great many for whom this is true.

But here’s the thing: we only get one body! We can only neglect and abuse our bodies for so long before we pay for it. And when I say, “pay for it,” I mean in many more ways than just physically or financially.

5 Things a Healthy Body Can Do for You:

  • Gives you more energy to work more efficiently.
  • Helps you think more clearly.
  • Makes you look and feel better.
  • Protects you from flus, colds, and other diseases.
  • Provides you and your loved ones more years to enjoy.

5 Ways to Keep Your Body Healthy

Following are five chief ways to establish and maintain a healthy lifestyle:

#1 Get adequate sleep

Medical professionals warn us that most Americans don’t get enough sleep. I’ve heard people (especially entrepreneurs) brag about how little sleep they need, claiming they can get by on four or five hours per night. Nonsense — sleep deprivation is a form of torture!

Studies confirm that adults need between 7 and 9 hours of good sleep each night. Here are some ways to help you do that:

  • Stick to a consistent schedule.
  • Establish a bedtime routine that’s conducive to sleeping, like reading before going to bed.
  • Don’t eat or drink excessively or late.
  • Create the ideal sleep environment for you: dark, cool, quiet room, etc.
  • Exercise regularly. Exercise promotes a good night’s sleep.

#2 Establish a healthy eating plan

Here again, we Americans typically eat way too much food and we eat the wrong foods. Below are some pointers to eat in a healthy manner:

  • Take time to create a meal plan and shop accordingly.
  • Eat whole, fresh foods: meat, fish, vegetables, fruit, whole grains, etc.
  • To the extent possible, eat three meals a day at regular times.
  • Eat until you’re satisfied, but not stuffed.

#3 Drink lots of water

Once again, the medical community tells us that many of us are dehydrated. Dehydration depletes our energy and hinders clarity of thought. Try these tips:

  • Drink 8 glasses of water per day.
  • Limit your coffee and tea consumption.
  • Don’t drink alcohol every day, and when you do drink, don’t drink to excess.

#4 Exercise regularly

A regular exercise routine can help you: sleep better, digest food better, drink more water, give you more energy, and improve the way you look and feel. Here some tips for exercising:

  • Engage in one or more exercises that you enjoy.
  • Choose exercises that fit your schedule and lifestyle.
  • Exercise at least three times per week for at least 30 minutes.

#5 Take time regularly to rest and recharge

A regular routine of rest and relaxation is as important to your health and energy as a good night’s sleep. By taking a day off, you’ll find that you become more productive in your work. Try these suggestions:

  • Establish one day a week to be your day of rest.
  • Plan your rest day ahead of time and design it to be a day you look forward to.
  • Don’t engage in any of your normal business work on your rest day.
  • Spend your rest day with loved ones.

As business owners and entrepreneurs, we work hard. Long hours. We push ourselves. We’re driven. We’re task-oriented. We’re desperate to see our business grow and succeed. With all that focus on our business, it’s easy to neglect our bodies. And when we neglect our physical health, inevitably our business and everything else dear to us will suffer.

If you want to breathe new life into your business, take care of your body. After all, you only get one body!

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