03/16/2015 02:39 EDT | Updated 05/16/2015 05:59 EDT

An Easy Formula To Stay Healthy

concept of love for health
RomoloTavani via Getty Images
concept of love for health

The gym has become exercise.

Diet means restriction.

Food became the thing that makes us fat or skinny, not fuel.

Becoming health-conscious mean weight loss.

When did we get twisted around so badly as a culture? When did our appearance become more important than enjoying life and being healthy? There are very few things that I want to change about the world I live in. The way we treat our bodies, and how little value we have on health is one of the things I most want to see change.

We die from preventable diseases.

We sit down for hours when we could explore the world.

We watch other people do the impossible instead of trying it ourselves.

As I go out and do workplace wellness seminars, and consult with workplaces to create an environment of health and community of activity, I'm encouraged. People want more, but there is just a very simple confusion as to how to go about it. Everybody is different, but there are three keys to success everyone can apply.

1) We need to move -- It got called exercise, then exercise became the gym. Now people don't move at all. All your body needs is a 20-minute walk. Everything else is gravy. If you like crossfit, do crossfit. If you like yoga, do yoga. If all you want to do is walk, that's all you have to do. Keep in mind, it's for health. You want a cover model body because YOU want it, it takes work. Walking prevents disease.

2) We need to eat real food -- I get confused reading the latest diet books. Paleo, If It Fits My Macros, Vegan, Vegetarian, the list is long. The root of all successful diets is real food. Don't worry about much past if it's real. Could you go to a farm and get it instantly? The shelves of the supermarket that you want to shop from should basically be the same as your ancestors walking into the backyard and grabbing necessities. That should be 90 per cent of what you eat. The rest, well, science is awesome and although sugar is really bad, it tastes really good. Those chemical-filled, sugar-infused junk foods that we all love should be kept as treats. Once to twice a week eat them because the taste is awesome. If you can go longer than a week without it, great. I find in my life I'll have a full month where I'm happy to eat just real food, then the cravings hit. So I eat those things. Sometimes it happens three times a week. The point is to know your healthy self. My resting heart rate is 60 beats per minute. Blood pressure at my last check up was 115/80. I can run three miles without stopping in about 30 minutes. I also like the way my clothes fit. The rest works itself out. Sit down, talk with your doctor. Figure out what you need for health, it's a lot easier than you think.

3) We need to sleep -- Ladies and gentlemen, this is the secret to making everything work. Rest and recovery is so very important. Go and get a new bed, create a perfect bedroom, do whatever you need to do to get a good night sleep. If you can't get a good night sleep with your partner in the room, for your health's sake, sleep apart. The hormonal reset that comes with sleep and the ability to be alert and energetic is imperative. Get your rest at all costs.

The final portion to this is to find a role model. Not a 22-year-old hottie whose parents still do all the shopping and pay the rent. Find someone who's living healthy, has a career and knows how to take care of themselves.

Nationally, one of our best representatives is Sangita Patel. We love her for her work on ET Canada, but if you follow her on social media you know about her passion for making health and fitness part of her life.

She is one to follow, and if you need inspiration as to why, here's her answering the basics on how a Mom stays healthy.

(Q) How often do you workout?

(A) Three to four times a week unless I need to get into a dress for an event, then I usually incorporate more cardio every day!

(Q) How much do you sweat?

(A) A LOT! A good ponytail is necessary when dripping in sweat while doing CrossFit.

(Q)How heavy are the weights?

(A) I usually do 60-80 percent prescribed weight in a WOD at Element CrossFit, but I can back squat my own weight, push press 65 lbs and deadlift 135 lbs. For the more repetitive workouts I usually lessen the weight.

(Q)Why do you exercise?

(A)I'm a mother and I need to be healthy for my kids, and well it just makes me feel great. Especially when I don't have to worry about how clothes that the ET Canada stylist pulls for me are going to fit. It makes both of our lives easier!

Here's some visuals from her life thanks to the magic of Instagram.

That's a role model for you Canada. She works out with heavy weights, get's sweaty and Sangita does it all for health and to be a role model for her kids. Of course, as with everyone, there are the days where we want to look good so we push it a little more. That's the ideal way to look at this healthy living. To see Sangita in action tune in to ET Canada weeknights at 7:30pm et/pt on Global, check out her Instagram (sangita.patel) or follow her on Twitter @sangita_patel.

Find your fun, make it a lifestyle, and then turn it up when you need to. That's how we will create a healthy nation, One Fit City at a time.


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