When it comes to New Years resolutions, there’s always an impulse to make healthy changes. Your local Washington DC primary care physician has some tips on developing healthier habits. Here are our 10 tips for a healthier you in 2020.
1. Jump Right In
Waiting for the right moment to start can lead to procrastination. Our lives never slow down, especially here in Washington DC, take it from a primary care physician. Creating small goals that build upon larger ones can increase the likelihood that you’ll stick with it, which leads us to our next tip.
2. Don’t Go It Alone
Finding a partner to hold you accountable can help get you through the ups and downs of making lifestyle changes. Conquering a new fitness goal with a friend can ease initial urges to quit. Beyond that, friendly competition and support contribute greatly to the enjoyability of something as routine as exercise.
3. Set Yourself Up for Success
A lot of the time, we are creatures of convenience—even your primary care physician can’t resist fast food all the time! Here in Washington DC we’re always on the go, so failing to plan our meals or exercise times can sabotage our intentions easily. To ensure success, consider meal planning. If that’s too involved for you, purge unhealthy foods and stock up on healthy snacks and meal options.
4. Carve Out Some Time to for You
Consider leaving work at work, if possible. Having a few hours to spend quality time with family, friends, and pursuing hobbies is important. Not to mention, there are tons of things to get done at home. When hanging out with friends, consider adopting healthier activities if your usual fun involves spectator activities or overindulging in eating and drinking.
5. Get Hydrated!
Water is crucial in almost every bodily process. This year, try to make drinking more water one of your health priorities. Keep in mind, tip number one, and don’t try to go from drinking virtually no water to 64 ounces. Make small goals and stick to them for a time before progressing. Also, check out these tips.
6. Learn to Manage Stress Better
As any primary care physician can attest (especially those working in Washington DC), there’s no way to completely remove stress from your life. Whether you pick up a new hobby, schedule out home and car maintenance & errands, or learn to meditate-handling stress is crucial.
7. Sitting is the New Smoking
Ok, so sitting is not as detrimental to your health as smoking, but you should stand up more. Many of us spend the bulk of our day at desks and commuting to and from work—and all this sitting isn’t good for us. From weight gain to increased risk of disease, there are many good reasons to stand up more. Try to get up at least 10 minutes per hour and consider opting for a stand-up desk if possible.
8. Get Over It
Don’t obsess about the missteps or indulgences. Forgive yourself for having that decadent dessert, and don’t punish yourself for doing something you truly enjoy. Don’t allow yourself to totally erase all your progress because you missed an exercise class or didn’t meet your water quota for the day. Absolute consistency isn’t realistic, and ideas of perfectionism can derail genuine growth
9. Eat More Veggies
If you’re not inclined to become a vegetarian or vegan—that’s fine. However, nearly everyone could benefit by consuming more plant-based meals. Legumes like lentils, beans, and chickpeas contain essential nutrients and a protein punch. Colorful veggies have nutrients and can increase the overall size of a meal without ramping up the calorie count.
10. Get Your Check-Up
Lastly, don’t forget to schedule an annual physical with your doctor. Physicals create opportunities to evaluate baselines for vitals, as well as update your vaccines if need be. Furthermore, you can discuss any concerns you may have and determine whether more investigation is warranted. Annual health appointments help catch problems before they become full blown crises.
10 Tips from a Primary Care Physician in Washington DC
We hope that these tips will inspire you to make healthy investments in your health this year. If you’d like to schedule a physical with Dr. Rashbaum, call our office or fill out our contact form here. All of us at Capital Medical Associates wish you a happy and healthy 2020!