Aging is a natural process.
It does not come alone; it is coupled with an increase in wealth and wisdom.
One must wonder, if an increase in age leads to an increase in income and knowledge, why do we fear growing up?
It is only logical to think that we are not scared of white hair, but what it signifies – a visual reminder that our days are numbered.
For some looking at feeling healthy is like flicking a switch on in the house, you don’t even know you’re doing it, and that was certainly the case with me growing up with a twin.
From playing footy and cricket all day till dark only to call it a day with a platter of fruit, we stayed active and ate healthy food.
Developing good habits early on has paid off well.
Let me share the 7 great things I did in my 20’s that have allowed me to stay away from a walking stick, increase my wealth and wisdom, and prevent crow’s feet around my eyes!
1. Eat Close to Nature
We have often heard we are what we eat, but no matter how many days we stick to our diets for, we never seem to shed the extra kilos and reveal chiseled jaw and abs.
You are what you eat is old-school advice now.
From my experience, you are a collective sum of everything that you have consumed over the years.
So, it’s not just what you eat now, but what you have been eating continuously!
Here’s a list of all the great foods I fueled my 20’s with:
· Lean Meat
Meat is a great source of protein that helps build and maintain muscle.
It’s no rocket science to conclude how a healthy consumption of lean meat, such as fish and chicken, can allow you to limit the loss of muscle mass over the years. Consequently, even at 50, you will be the center of attention and a symbol of longevity.
A research has also found eating more protein can reduce the number of candles on your birthday cake, helping you stay young forever (or maybe for just a few years).
From James Welsh to Alpha M., every YouTuber and skin and fitness expert can write volumes on how important water is for both your body and skin.
It is essential to moisturize your skin from the outside but keeping yourself hydrated and moisturized from inside is equally important.
Remember, you CAN lose weight using all those other complicated dieting techniques but fasting makes them unnecessary. So quit thinking about the science behind dieting, or what the latest expert said, and concentrate on losing weight with fasting.
Sure, there are less rules and guides and things you must do when you follow this fasting, and this takes some getting used to; but if I have learned anything about long term diet success, it is that when it comes to diet rules, less is more.
I would also recommend trying to fast once a week for up to 24 hours.
Confused about how to go about fasting? Checkout this video I made on fasting.
Also, set a deadline to stop eating by 6 PM.
It’s not good for your body to eat a big meal late at night so make it a point to eat light at night.
2. Sleep Like a Baby
That doesn’t mean that you wake up every 4 hours and cry then repeat ….
Let’s get serious now!
How many times have you heard that you’ve to spend sleepless nights to achieve lasting success in life?
I am sure we have all been told and pushed towards sacrificing our sleep to meet just another deadline or finish yet another project.
As paradoxical as I might sound right now, you do not need to lose out on your night-time sleep to achieve anything in life.
Other than the haunting dark circles that follow insomnia, a lack of sleep can adversely affect your mental and physical health.
Anxiety, dementia, obesity, early aging – almost all the syndromes can be traced back to a lack of sleep.
In my early years, I might have lost out on a few things, but sleep has never been one!
Lights out at 9:30 PM was a ritual at our home. While it helped me in recovery, it helped my mum to keeping us quiet – a win-win for all.
Even as an adult, I have never had to rely on sleeping pills to catch deep and peaceful Zzzs.
On days when my mind would refuse to go to bed, I would practice the following tips that were passed on to me by my late grandfather, who, if I might add, was as much of a fan of sleeping as I am!
3. Stay Active
Try to not just life weights, but also do some cardiovascular exercises to increase blood flow and balance the hormones.
If hormones such as melatonin are balanced in your body, your circadian rhythms – the clock that regulates your sleep – will be just fine.
Make it a point to staying active throughout the day.
4. Caffeine – Catching the Culprit
Caffeine has some negative effects on our bodies. One of which is its ability to give us a boost of energy and keep us turning in our beds.
Do you know why babies sleep like they do? While we are not sure of the answer, we are quite confident their lack of caffeine intake helps them sleep like a baby!
Try giving up coffee for a while and you’ll notice the remarkable results yourself.
5. Always Practice Good Form and put your mind in the muscle
Exercising should not be a part of your 20’s; it should be your lifeline, and a practice you incorporate into your routine.
As I was nearing my early 20s, I picked up a few dumbbells and weight plates.
I had always been reading the latest magazine finding out what works and what doesn’t and I did 2 things which I still do today Test & Measure principal, you see you can listen to the so called experts but what might be good for someone may not be right for you.
It all came down to how I was lifting my weights.
Therefore, if you do not wish to have bones that crackle like a tree branch during adulthood, you must practice good form in sleeping, sitting, and walking.
Always remember the classical old-age adage: “Good posture and an attitude let you get away with anything”.
Also putting your “mind in the muscle” will enable you to focus on that muscle contraction.
6. What’s in Booze & Sugar?
Sugar and alcohol are great indulgences. and the ultimate disrupter.
There’s hardly any recipe or an event that sugar and alcohol don’t add their spice into!
Yet, while a healthy intake of sugar is advised, consuming unnecessarily high amounts of processed sugar can cause oral problems like tooth decay.
If I am able to bite open a bottle of beer with my teeth, it is all thanks to my healthy consumption of sugar since my 20’s.
Wondering how ditching alcohol can work wonders for you? Give this blog on alcohol and weight loss a read.
7. Work-Life Balance
Remember how we mentioned we don’t fear aging, we fear the impending doom and the thoughts of leaving our worldly abode.
To live a life of contentment, one must maintain a good work-life balance.
As a university student some decades back, I came across this advice by my professor, who had spent decades researching what makes humans happy.
His research on happiness and adult development found that human connections make us happy.
Happiness in our younger years evolves into feelings of contentment at a later stage.
It is only with a good work life balance that we can truly stay happy and fulfilled even as we age.
To embrace the above-mentioned seven steps during your 20s is not easy. However, it is worth it.
Every additional minute of sleep and exercise, every sip of alcohol and excessive sugar that you say no to, and clean food that you eat in your 20’s will help you pave your way to success in life.
So, what’s holding you back, then?
Equip yourself with our 7 simple tips to make your youthful days a joy to remember!
Look after your body for the first 50 Years and it will look after you for the next 50!
Always laugh with Health!