5 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineAugust 5, 2020

There is a truck-load of things you can do to improve your overall health and wellbeing. You don‘t need to do anything drastic or too out of the box. Sometimes small and simple acts can amount to great improvements in your health and fitness.

In the spirit of ‘Try July‘, have a go at some of these simple methods to improve your health this month:
• Drink more water – it is recommended that you drink at least two litres of water every day. This sounds like a lot, but if you always have a drink bottle on you and just sip away all day, it quickly adds up. Many people don‘t enjoy the taste of water, and if you are in this group you can always add lemon, water drops, or caffeine-free herbal tea bags to make the taste a bit more pleasant.

• Get more sleep – I know that this is easier said than done, but sleep quality and quantity is extremely important in helping you function throughout the day. You always feel it the next day if you haven‘t had enough sleep or have had a broken sleep. The way you can improve your sleep quality and quantity is to go to bed earlier; even 30 minutes earlier can make a big difference. Having a nighttime routine in place also helps signal to your body that it‘s almost time to rest and relax into sleep. It is also recommended that you stay off devices such as mobile phones and televisions before bed, as the light can be disruptive for a good quality sleep.

• Try a new form of exercise – this is where the old ‘don‘t knock it till you‘ve tried it‘ comes into play. I feel like sometimes we write things off before we have given them a good nudge – so try something new. There is an abundance of different ways to get a sweat up – join a sports team, try a group fitness class, start cycling, boxing, swimming, kayaking, belly dancing – the list goes on! It‘s also a great way to socialise and meet new people.

• Eat more vegetables – this doesn‘t mean you have to live off broccoli and celery, it just means trying to sneak in more vegetables throughout your day. It can be as simple as making an omelette with spinach, tomato, capsicum and onion instead of making scrambled eggs. A simple swap that has allowed you to pack a whole heap more veges in – and an ‘eggcellent‘ choice.

• Set some goals – some people find goal setting to be quite daunting and difficult, but if you make your goals specific and measureable, they are more likely to be achieved. What you could do is set three goals – a personal goal, a fitness goal, and a nutrition goal. That way you are focusing on three aspects of your life that you could make slight adjustments and improvements to. For example, a personal goal could be to make more time for yourself or to finish that book that you started reading a year ago. A fitness goal could be to do three exercise sessions every week where you are getting your heart rate up. A nutritional goal could be to eat fewer takeaways – I‘m currently having takeaways twice a week and would like to cut that back to once a week. It‘s nothing drastic or unachievable and is easily measurable. Plus, how good does it feel when you achieve a goal that you‘ve set for yourself!

Best of luck with all of your ‘Try July‘ endeavours. You know what they say, ‘nothing ventured, nothing gained‘.

Photo: Trying new things to make exercise different and fun – something as simple as a tyreflip or joining the local pool.