It’s no secret that the pace of London life is full-on. We work 12-hour days just to cover basic expenses and when winter rolls round we go to work and come home in the dark. This makes it ever more tempting to head to the pub than go for a run. Our weeks become like one big rat race of getting up, jumping on the underground, spending the day in an office, commuting home, sleeping and then getting ready to do it all over again. No wonder depression and obesity levels are on the rise. If we don’t make a conscious decision to live better, it’s easy to fall down a slippery slope. Here are five ways to live a healthier life in London.
1. Value Your Sleep
There’s a lot of focus on working hard, setting goals and delivering. This is all good and well, but not if it’s at the expense of a balanced life. We need to prioritize time for family, exercise, friends, socializing and just being quiet. We all know how much sleep we need as individuals. One person may need nine hours per night, while another needs only six to function well. Work out what’s best for you and stick to it. Sleep is your best friend.
2. Cycle to Work
If you’re finding it difficult to squeeze exercise into your working days, try cycling to work. London is geared up for cyclists with cycling routes spanning the entire city. On CityMapper you can opt for a quiet route to work. By the time you get to work you’ll feel refreshed and ready to take on the day. It certainly beats being crammed onto the underground and it’s much healthier.
3. Go for a Walk (or run) During Your Lunch Break
Don’t eat your sandwich in front of the computer. Head outside, this is your chance to catch some fresh air. Even just a little bit of time outdoors will make you feel energized. For the organized and committed, why not go for a 40-minute run during your break? You’ll be surprised how much more productive you’ll be after that.
4. Get Outdoors over Weekends
We all like a good party from time to time, but weekends are precious, so prioritise time to be active and get outdoors. Few things are as depressing as spending Saturday and Sunday hungover and then having to face the office again. Find your balance, but be sure to go for a run, a hike or a picnic in one of London’s many beautiful parks. There is also a vast network of canals to explore on foot or on bicycle.
5. Stretch it Out
It’s not healthy sitting in front of a computer for three hours straight. Yes, we have deadlines and crazy schedules, but take five minutes every hour or so to stretch. Stand up, take a few deep breaths, stretch up, touch your toes, roll your ankles and sit back down again. Your body will be grateful.
6. Eat Well
You really are what you eat. It can be tricky making dinner when you’re getting home at 8pm, so make sure to PRE-PLAN your meals. Online shopping makes it possible to order all your groceries for delivery on a set day. This makes it easier to have all your ingredients on the ready when you get home. Another great idea is to make big pots of soup and other healthy meals over the weekend and then to freeze set portions for use during the week. If you eat well, you’ll feel well too.
[It’s all about balance, so a little treat every now and then is okay – check out Safeera’s blog for amazing food inspiration].