In our last two parts relating to planning for the next decade, we stressed on how spirituality and good health are the foundation of your success in this decade.
Today we share some very simple yet effective strategies for good health. Just about anyone today can give useful health tips, but we’ll try to do this from a unique perspective – one that ties your meditation routine to your health strategies.
1 Establish your meditation routine first
Your overall well-being is taken care of once you go deeper into your meditation regularly and consistently. Holistic good health is only possible by combining meditation and fitness strategies.
Meditation can give us optimism and positivity, reduce our stress levels, keep us more focused and help us develop greater self-control for eating healthy. Best of all, it can be the foundation for developing and sustaining good habits for better health. These include having regular workouts and sticking to healthy eating.
Meditation can take out the confusion and muddled thoughts that inhibit us from following a consistent fitness routine.
2 Use the power of your meditation to form powerful, healthy habits
Meditation can help rewire your brain much more quickly to develop healthy habits and discipline. Because you gain a lot of self-awareness through meditation, you can push yourself easily, find out where you’re lacking and keep your habits under check.
When you get off track on eating healthy or staying fit, use your meditation to guide yourself back on track through introspection, patience and slowing down your busy life.
3 Eat small portions and eat natural
Without crunching a lot of numbers on calories consumed and diet plans, the simplest way to stay fit is to control what you eat. If over 80% of what you eat is home-cooked meals and all from natural ingredients (no heavily processed foods) and reasonably healthy (just a little fat and sugar here and there, not a lot!), you’ll see your physical fitness surge dramatically.
If you eat just enough to satisfy your hunger in every meal, that will provide even more benefits. Stop eating when you feel your hunger has been satisfied and not to fill yourself completely. This can be extremely difficult when you are very hungry and the food choices are plenty.
Stop for a moment and put your attention on the higher consciousness you have access to using your meditation. Tell yourself that higher purpose in life is most important to you. You will find yourself more mature, allow that moment to pass and eat in a more balanced manner.
Each moment of sacrifice you make for getting healthier will make you stronger and more determined.
The other easy way for portion control is to choose an 8-inch plate as your plate to eat on and put no more food than that plate can hold (and don’t stack food like a mountain because the plate is small, only one layer of food is allowed in a meal.)
4 Manage Stress eating through meditation
The majority of people on a fitness program who do not eat healthy find that the stress in their lives causes them to break their discipline and give in. Use your meditation to keep your stress in check and so you won’t be susceptible to stress eating.
5 Fasted cardio exercise
The two best fitness strategies combined into one are to have an early and light dinner, 7-8 hours sleep and a 20 to 25-minute workout after you wake up. This could be as simple as walking up and down the stairs inside your home. Or going for a walk or if you feel up to it, exercising. Or simply do some household chores that involve some intense physical activity. Whatever you do needs to be brisk and you need to break a sweat.
Fasted cardio has been scientifically shown to increase the benefits of cardio activity many times.
And it would be best if you did this 3-4 times a week consistently, so pick something that you like doing and can stick to in the long term. Many people choose a racquet sport like tennis or pickleball (the fastest growing racquet sport in America today) and playing with their friends, so staying active is no longer a boring workout – they look forward to it eagerly. Find that physical activity that you will enjoy doing for life and do it week after week.
Your heart rate needs to go up for any activity to qualify as cardio. You’re unlikely to see significant benefits if you do slow walking for an hour, for example.
6 Strength training
Another highly beneficial health strategy is to do strength training thrice a week. This makes your muscles and bones stronger as you age and provides a great form of anaerobic exercise, resulting in fat and calories burn for hours after the workout.
Simple cost-effective ways of doing strength training doing floor and bodyweight exercises or using a pair of dumbbells at home to do some basic exercises. The internet is filled with stories of what happened when people did 25 pushups daily for a month and the huge benefits they noticed. You could pick some basic and most important bodyweight exercises like squats and pushups and do them consistently.
For those with greater interest and to maximize the benefits of strength training, you could consider getting a trainer at a gym to keep you accountable for strength training. Even if you spend the money, it is totally worth it as the only investment you make for your good health in life.
7 Keeping your attention clear and sharp for good health
Strength training takes care of your muscles and bones, cardio takes care of your heart and lungs while healthy eating manages your digestive system and organs well. Your meditation routine keeps your brain healthy.
The other important organ that needs nourishment is your liver, which manages your attention and how you use it in life. Regulating your attention to avoid excessive mental activity through your meditation can help your liver a lot. If your life is balanced physically, mentally and emotionally, your liver can go about doing its core job of removing the toxins from your blood.
Mastering Sahaja meditation’s thoughtless awareness can be the most healthy strategy of your life.
8 Improving the quality of your sleep using your meditation
A deep meditation with a cool water foot soak before you get to bed will hugely benefit and improve your quality of sleep. There are many ways in which meditation can help improve your sleep. Getting rest is vital to staying healthy and there is no better way to do this naturally by balancing yourself entirely after a busy day.
Good quality sleep is essential for recovery from your physical activity.
9 Balance is crucial
There are stories of how someone can kill an entire week’s workout with one big ice cream.
And how people eat a lot of processed foods but prefer to eat organic.
And then those who eat pizzas but prefer to save calories drinking only diet sodas (which incidentally are terrible compared to the bad sodas in general).
And those who load up on expensive supplements while not focusing on the nutrition from their food.
As far as meditators go, a sense of balance is crucial. It is better to pick strategies that are simple, can be followed consistently without overdoing anything or upsetting the balance of our lives. We don’t need to choose any extreme methods or spend a lot of money for staying healthy.
10 Manage your health to your own goals in life
An incredible number of people pursue weight loss and fitness routines because they want to look good in the eyes of their friends or colleagues. Or look good in a swimsuit at their college reunion. Many crazy diets, fanatical calorie counting and unsustainable workout programs are developed to feed into this notion of external appearance. The majority of them are designed to make money and very few of them can be followed consistently for your entire life.
As a meditator, you should be clear about why good health and fitness matters in your life. Not having to worry about health problems means your attention can be freed up to pursue higher purpose in life and help the world.
Good health and physical fitness is a lifelong pursuit and a marathon, so it is important that you pick strategies that cost less or nothing but are still very effective. And most important of all, they should be sustainable for life and go hand in hand with your meditation routine for as long as you live.