July 15, 2014
As a health and fitness professional, I am often asked questions about exercise and what can be done to look better. What is the best exercise for the coveted six-pack abs? What is the best type of cardio exercise for weight loss? We often forget that a healthy lifestyle is not only physical. As a matter of fact, there are 6 dimensions of wellness:
1. Physical – the body’s overall condition as it relates to one’s health and fitness level. This includes being free of disease and practicing self-care.
2. Interpersonal – this is the ability to develop relationships with others and maintain them.
3. Intellectual – this dimension of wellness entails being open minded, willing to accept new ideas and have new experiences.
4. Environmental – the livability of your surroundings. Caring for/protecting the environment as well as knowing how to protect yourself from the environment.
5. Spiritual – having a set of principles and values for life. Beliefs that guide you to be the best person you can be.
6. Emotional – the ability to understand your emotions and monitor your reactions. This includes the ability to identify the things that may cause emotional instability and adjust them accordingly.
These dimensions of wellness are interrelated, that is to say that when we make gains in one area, we will see positive changes in the others. For example, engaging in a regular exercise program and eating nutritious meals will create marked improvement in the way we look and feel (physical wellness). This, in turn will have a positive impact on our interpersonal and intellectual wellness as our self confidence will increase, causing us to be more open to meeting new people and developing new relationships. Get it? The opposite is also true. Neglecting one of these areas can cause a negative shift in others.
The benefits of a healthy lifestyle go way beyond looking good! I applaud everyone who has taken steps to becoming healthy, and encourage those who are still contemplating to try it and see for yourself. Pay attention to these areas of your life and make small improvements each day. You will add years to your life and feel great while doing it!
Yours in health,