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The following article was published in Your Health Magazine. Our mission is to empower people to live healthier.
John A. Mays, MSEd
Building the Body and the Brain
Fitness Together

Building the Body and the Brain

The total package of a healthy lifestyle not only includes being physically fit, but also mentally strong. The same energy and attention you put into building your body's strength, endurance and flexibility should also be applied to having a positive attitude and perspective on life.

Mind Over Matter

Living a well-balanced healthy lifestyle starts with focusing on your mental, physical and nutritional health during your daily life activities If you are not committed to your nutrition, training and attitude, one or all of those is bound to suffer. Your attitude in the weight room, on the elliptical or jogging has to stay with you while you are in a restaurant, taking care of the kids or sitting in your office.

One of the first steps is to have solid, attainable goals before beginning the journey of health and fitness. Without a goal, or at least a vision in mind, you will most likely end up spinning your wheels or finding yourself working toward the impossible. Set your sights high, but be aware of the fine line between being realistic and completely impractical.

An example of a realistic and challenging goal might be to add 20 pushups to your existing maximum set of 10 within eight weeks. This type of approach gives you a clear-cut goal that can be broken down into smaller increments, making the challenge both mentally and physically achievable.

This is much easier to manage, keep track of and make little tweaks along the way. Strengthen the mind and the body will follow.

Active Lifestyles
Breed Healthy Habits

Proper nutrition and exercise go hand in hand for achieving mental and physical health. While illness, stress, depression and other outside influences can take their toll on mental and physical health, each of these conditions has been shown to be diminished or even eliminated with the right diet and exercise plan.

While there is no one right way to train or eat, and not every program works for everyone, the two must be combined and work synergistically for the best outcome. The hormonal response the body puts out when undergoing these activities has been proven by science time and time again to illicit happy thoughts and less stress.

It's important to incorporate strength training, cardio and mobility into your fitness regimen. A consistent cardio routine is key to keeping the heart healthy, enhancing your body's recovery and improving longevity, while lifting weights is an integral component to building strength, burning calories and accelerating fat loss. Weight training builds lean muscle, which in turn burns more calories because your body must use energy to build and maintain your muscles. More calories burned can lead to an increase in fat loss, making for a healthier and happier you.

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