The box. This word has so many applications! The CrossFit Box, the standard way of thinking box, and the cereal box to name a few. Whatever your take on the word, the truth is you may need to start thinking outside of the box to get healthy. To begin with, let’s define health. It isn’t just about getting abs and losing weight, it’s about quality of life. This is measured by the metric of smiles, lack of stress and the overall function of your life machine – health is whole body and mind wellness. There are unalienable maxims in the realm of health: exercise and nutrition. These two staples are non-negotiable. Your body chemistry is dictated by the the fuel you put into it and the way you burn it. This chemistry controls your body’s functions and your brain’s moods. There is a lot of Science and research backing this up for you to dig into under the resources section, but the point is not to drill the why of the equation, but to discuss the how. If exercise and nutrition are the key, then what is the best way to open the door to healthy living? The answer: think outside of the box.

The CrossFit Box

The CrossFit craze has grown rapidly over the years and countless people have drank the Koolaid. That is awesome! It is a fitness paradigm based on real life. The moves are functional and increase general physical preparedness. It incorporates a little bit of everything and daily workouts so even the most ADD of us all can’t get bored with the programming. The mix of strength and metabolic conditioning does a body good, but not everyone is particularly fond of it. Or those who are may be looking for something a little more to add to their regimen. In either case it is time to think outside of the box for ways to get healthy.

The “Standard Way of Thinking” Box

Outside of CrossFit there are plentiful options for exercise, each with their own merits and drawbacks. Yet, to think outside of the box it is important to look at other ways to get healthy.

Cold Showers

If you’re anything like most, the words cold and shower seem more like antonyms than terms put together in a phrase. The reality is that even adding a minute of cold water submersion at the end of your shower has positive health benefits. Cold shower benefits include:

  • Improved circulation
  • Increased immune system response
  • Decreased anxiety and depression through mindfulness
  • Increased energy

That is a list anyone should be happy to embrace! Not to mention, the exposure and improved circulation make it easier to handle cold weather when it comes along.

Breathing

It is no coincidence that Eastern cultures have been practicing the art of breathing and meditation for centuries. Not only does breathing help you release toxins and oxygenate your blood, but it also clears your mind. When you focus your attention on the task and let all other thoughts drift away, stress is released from your mind. It is extremely important to get a moment of rest and clarity for your brain in such a busy world. Try spending 3 minutes focusing on nothing but taking big, deep breaths. You may find yourself savoring some of the following positive effects:

  • Lower or stabilized blood pressure
  • Decreased anxiety and depression
  • Muscle relaxation
  • Reduced stress and tension
  • Increased energy

See the pattern here? These non-traditional, creative actions have some of the same amazing benefits.

Spending Time in Nature

Spending time in nature is no different. It is a great addition to any exercise routine, or a terrific way to start one. Go for a walk and breath in the cool air, put your bare toes in the grass, or admire the night sky. Whatever connection with nature suits you best, be prepared to reap the rewards. Spending time connecting with nature has been shown to:

  • Increase positive moods
  • Decrease blood pressure and heart rate
  • Increase empathy for others
  • Decrease the production of stress hormones

The time you spend in nature has positive effects, but so does eating natural foods.

The Cereal Box

In addition to taking care of your mind and body through action, it is important to fuel it properly too. Avoid processed foods that are laden with sugars and chemicals to keep your machine running clean. Instead of starting your day with smooshed up grains and man made additives from a cereal box, have a breakfast made of real, natural food. Whole foods incorporated into a balanced diet are also a great way to see many of the benefits listed above. They affect your health, energy, performance and state of mind. We believe in this so much that we are willing to cook, package and deliver the food to you.

Additional Reads:

Physical and Emotional Health: Connecting the Dots Breathing for Life: The Mind-Body Healing Benefits of Pranayama How Does Nature Impact Our Wellbeing?

-Team PLN

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