We all know the benefits of working out regularly and eating clean. This directly translates into being able to fit into any jeans, pants or skirt; looking glamorous in a tank top; and having something to show when you take off your shirt at the next beach party. Yet clean eating, coupled with a regime of strength training and cardiovascular exercise, has benefits far beyond just looking hot.

It is in fact a truly empowering way to live, from both the psychological and physiological perspective because you (and only you) made the conscious decision to live your life this way.

We all have choices in life. That is the beauty of it. We can either choose to do this or do that. We can choose whether we want to spend the evening resting on the couch watching television or working out hard at the gym. We can choose whether we want to indulge in ice cream on a hot day or just drink more water to hydrate. We can choose whether to do our runs like what we promised we would or cave in to the little voice in our head that tells us it’s too much of a torture to put ourselves through.

Choosing to lead a healthy lifestyle should thus not be something someone else has prescribed for us. It is not a bitter pill we have to swallow because the doctor says it’s good for us. It should be a self-made decision that you have rationalized and thought through carefully. And once you have made the choice, you will stick with it no matter how hard the going gets.

No one chooses to do something on the spur of the moment. It is usually after some intensive research and looking at the success stories of others who have taken the beaten track. For those of us who choose to live a healthy lifestyle because we know the limitless potential benefits, chief of it all is that it allows us to own a body we feel comfortable in and are proud to flaunt.

Hate to admit it as much as we want but this benefit alone is enough for most of us. Who does not want to look and feel good? Who does not want to be the head-turner in a crowded room? Who does not want to attract the attention of the opposite sex easily and with confidence?

From a mental viewpoint, this healthy lifestyle which you have chosen to opt into not only changes your world view of things but also boosts your confidence. Physically, it makes you stronger, toned and more energetic so you will always be ready for the demands of both work and family. When you are able to strike a beautiful balance in these two areas, you are a winner. Empowerment flows within you effortlessly because you are in charge. As the captain, you steer your ship of life in the direction you want it to sail. You cannot call yourself the captain if you are always sick, feeling miserable and have a low self-esteem.

Maintaining a healthy regime of strength training and cardio is one of the best ways to skyrocket your energy levels. You can even choose to join a bootcamp as you get to meet like-minded people with similar fitness goals. Knowing a group of people are behind you in every action you take makes the going more pleasant. You encourage one another, you support one another and you push one another to the finish line.

One of the most commonly cited examples of the benefits of exercise is that it helps increase the level of endorphins being released in your body. The release of endorphins helps you to keep your energy levels up. When you increase your physical activity or pump harder during exercise, your body experiences a little discomfort. Endorphins help combat this. The more you work out, the more the endorphins allow your muscles to repair quickly. Up the challenge continually and you are in fact doing your body a huge favour as you force it to adapt and grow stronger while releasing more ‘happy’ chemicals to perk up your mood.

You can push yourself to the maximum during exercise and yet watch all your efforts go to waste should you go easy on your diet. In the same vein as that of your exercise regime, a diet (horrible as it sounds as it means you have to starve…which is not true) should form an integral part of your everyday life. The two keys are to eat small meals regularly and in moderation. Clean eating of meals that are high in lean protein, fiber and heart-healthy fats acts as a detox, helping your system function more efficiently. A diet that avoids processed foods and white sugar is one the best ways to retain consistent energy and avoid fatigue. White foods metabolize very quickly, kicking up your blood sugar and then dropping it down. This is not advisable as it means you are subjected to different energy levels throughout the day. Inevitably, this translates into having mood swings and problems focusing.

Tough as it sounds, it’s not really a mammoth task to start empowering yourself today. All it requires is determination to take that crucial first step out. Once you have taken the first step, the next few steps will naturally fall into place with perseverance. But if you like many are still hesitant and need someone to guide you along, we’ll be happy to be there for you. Click here now!

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