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3 Things to Try This Week to Improve Your Health

Do you start the week out with good intentions to do something to improve your health, but end up doing little — or nothing — by the end of the week because your goals just seemed too big to reach? What seems like a daunting task can turn into a success quite easily if you concentrate on picking one goal at a time and building on it.

Fitness

Brainerd Dispatch suggests several ideas from which to pick, from finding foods that are healthy but inexpensive, to treating yourself with a heart-healthy snack like dark chocolate, to figuring out a way to increase your physical activity without actually adding another activity.

No matter which suggestion you choose, the idea is to just pick one or two and work on those, rather than trying to reach a goal that encompasses so many things you can’t achieve them. For example, here are three things you can do without much effort, but with lots of rewards:

1. Get moving — Sure, that sounds like a great idea, but if you work at a desk all day or in a job where exercising isn’t possible, then this goal for the week could go down the tubes really fast — if you don’t know how to get around that roadblock. The good news is it’s possible to get moving right at your desk. Begin by just standing to work.

Get some books or a box and put your computer on top, and voila! You’re standing and working. Add some walking in place or just fidgeting and you’re moving. Then, next week, try pacing while you’re on the phone or, if you’re at home after work, get up during commercials and run in place for the length of the commercials. In another week, try the Nitric Oxide Dump, which can be done anywhere, any time, and only takes a few minutes.

2. Eat this, not that — You already know that eating the right amount of certain foods may help cut your risk of dying from heart disease, stroke and Type 2 diabetes by almost half, but picking a healthy menu for a whole week can be impossible if you don’t where to start. The good news with this is you can start by vowing to eliminate something from your diet, rather than trying to figure out what to add.

A good place to start would be to either vow to not eat anything sugar-sweetened. One way to do that would be to vow not to eat any processed food, which pretty much relegates you to whole, fresh foods — meaning instead of grabbing a candy bar or package of cookies or crackers for a snack, you would simply choose a handful of nuts or a fresh, crunchy veggie or fruit.

If that still seems more than you can handle all of a sudden, make up your mind to simply give up sodas and flavored drinks of all sorts — artificially sweetened included — and then, after you’ve achieved that, try the next step next week.

3. Address stress in your life — Oftentimes the reason we can’t achieve our health goals is because we’re just too stressed with other things going on in our lives to think about healthy goals. To that end, why not try the Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT), which is a noninvasive way to deal not only with emotional stress, but with addictions and — yes — sugar cravings.

EFT is very easy to do, and can be done anywhere, any time. It’s a form of psychological acupressure, based on the same energy meridians used in traditional acupuncture to treat physical and emotional ailments for over 5,000 years, but without the invasiveness of needles.

Instead, simple tapping with the fingertips is used to input kinetic energy onto specific meridians on the head and chest while you think about your specific problem. If EFT isn’t a “thing” you’re interested in, meditation and mindfulness are two more things that can deal with stress in just a few minutes.

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