Recently I started asking other Endurance Athletes for one of their Healthy Habits that they feel l others overlook. I got a lot of fantastic answers.

Sometimes the simplest and most basic items are the most productive.

I got a lot of great and surprising answers here are eleven of the best. (I may add more in the future)

1. Sleep.
A great diet and great exercise cannot overcome poor sleep habits.

2. Drinking Water – lots of water
It is amazing how much research about the importance of hydration and how many people do not stay properly hydrated. I will leave the details for another blog post but just know that you most likely would have more energy, be in a better mood and be generally happier. So go have a glass of water after finishing reading this post.

3. Learn to know when you are truly hungry
Are you hungry enough to eat a fruit or vegetable? If you are you are hungry, if not you are bored.

4. Don’t Drink Calories
I like this one, I drink coffee and tea with nothing in it. When it comes to non-cafinated drinks, I primarily drink water or fizzy water with zero calories. If you buy any sort of drink look at the sugar content and calories, you will find it very surprising. Also be on the lookout for many of the coffee drinks.

5. With exercise, something is better than nothing.
Many times just getting a small stretch, walk or activity counts. Many times just getting started will lead to something bigger. Side Note, I have also heard this for establishing a meditation habit. If you can only meditate for one minute a day, then that counts.

Pro Tip: If I get home from work & I’m supposed to go to the gym (or run) – and I don’t feel like it – I put my gym clothes on (or running clothes on) before making the final decision. When I do this, I’ve never not worked out or ran. Something weird about starting the process pushes you to complete it.

6. Establish a routine.
Get in the habit of planning and stick to it. Think about preparing your food for the next day, knowing if you are going to work out if so do you know what the workout will be. By having a consistent plan and sticking to it you will establish a good routine.

Pro Tip: Try to wake up and go to sleep at the same time no matter what day of the week. Keeping the same sleep routine on the weekends has great benefits.

7. Read the nutritional information in the food you buy
It is amazing what you can learn by reading the ingredients. If you do not know what is in the food, it might be good to skip it.

Pro Tip: Did you know there are over 100 different names for sugar? Try to avoid foods with lots of sugar and added sugar. The food companies will do their best to hide it from you.

8. Keep eating out at a minimum / Cook your own meals
Cooking at home will save lots of money and you will know exactly what you are eating. The food will be much healthier and you are in complete control.

Pro Tip: To go along with this try to avoid processed food.

9. Portion Control
As much as it is about the food you eat, it is about the amount of food. Watch your portion sizes and keep them reasonable.

Pro Tip: When you get your food see if you can cut it in half and eat half of it and save the other half for another meal.

10. Always take the stairs / Park further away
This may seem minor, but the extra effort will go a long way. Just remind yourself parking further away is not the end of the world. Same with taking the stairs.

11. Do not let a cheat meal become a cheat day
I would not be able to stay on track without have some relaxed or recovery days. If your plan is to have a cheat meal, do not let it become a cheat day. If your plan is to have a cheat day, do not let it become a cheat week. Even though you are relaxing the standards do not let it go to far.

I would love to hear your thoughts on these habits, are any of them in your daily routine? Which ones do you find the toughest to implement?

What other healthy habits would you add to this list?