Today is National Women’s Health and Fitness Day and that means it’s a good time to take stock of your habits and tweak any that aren’t so good. Look at this day as a time to celebrate your health and to see if you can make any changes to improve it.

Try a New Way of Eating for a Day

A diet less reliant on animal products is a healthier diet overall. Try going without any meat products for a day. If you really want to push yourself, try eliminating dairy and eggs as well. If you typically eat a super-healthy diet, switch it up a little by trying something new. Go for a smoothie instead of your coffee or get a quinoa salad instead of a green salad at lunch.

Drink More Water

This one bears repeating even if you don’t want to hear it. Staying hydrated makes your whole system more efficient and can help reduce feelings of fatigue or grogginess. Tired of water all day? Substitute flavored seltzer, plain seltzer with juice, or even toss a handful of lemons, limes, berries, or even cucumbers into your water bottle.

Get Your Heart Rate Up

Exercise is crucial for good health. You can either go full out through power spin classes or thrive on the camaraderie of a local softball team. Choose something you love because that means you’re more likely to keep it up. Keep moving for your health.

Get Your Heart Rate Down

As important as it is to get your heart pumping with exercise, it’s also just as essential to control your stress levels. Do something that will help relax you. Not a fan of meditation or yoga? Find something you like to do that relaxes you and takes you to a place of relaxation. That means vegging out in front of the TV won’t cut it. Paint, spend time with friends, pat your pet, listen to the wind, or read a book (trashy or educational doesn’t matter).

Get a Checkup

When is the last time you had a complete physical? Make an appointment today and keep it when it comes time. Do it to make sure your weight, blood pressure, glucose levels, cholesterol, thyroid rates, and inflammation markers are all normal enough to not raise any red flags. If you do get a couple of red flags, take care of them now while you can do something about it.

Treat Yourself Like You Treat Your Friends

Would you really tell your best friend that losing out on that great job must have happened because she’s not smart enough for the position? Would you tell her she looks terrible with those extra 10 pounds? Probably not. You should cut yourself the same slack you cut your friends. Constant negative self-talk will wear you down and can lead to higher rates of stress.

Take Care of Yourself

If you have any kind of chronic health issue, don’t ignore it. Stay on top of your medications and make sure you stay away from any foods or drinks or habits that could impact your specific condition negatively. If you need extra sleep, do your best to get it even if that means taking a couple of naps here and there. Get any necessary tests and follow up exams to keep on track.

Your good health is so important to your quality of life. Do what you can to stay fit and healthy!

Julia Quinn-Szcesuil
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