An active lifestyle is one of the keys to a long and healthy life. Unfortunately, many of us don’t move our bodies as much as we should for optimal health. If you spend a lot of time in the car, work all day at a desk, and unwind in front of the tv or scrolling social media, chances are you’re spending too much time sitting.
Inactive lifestyles and sedentary habits are linked to poor health, including weight gain, high blood pressure, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, cancer, arthritis, anxiety, and depression. On the flip side, an active lifestyle is linked to numerous health benefits, including:
- Lower risk of developing chronic disease
- Improved blood circulation
- Better mood
- More energy
- Healthy weight
Keep reading to learn how to be more active, plus a sample meal plan and healthy snack ideas to fuel your active lifestyle.
What is an active lifestyle?
Living an active lifestyle doesn’t mean you need to work out nonstop. It’s possible to have an inactive lifestyle even if you work out regularly. Exercising for 30 minutes to an hour most days of the week is a great start, but if the rest of your day lacks physical activity, there’s room for improvement.
Active living means you spend more time moving than sitting and incorporate all types of movement throughout your day. Any activity that requires you to be up and moving counts, including cleaning, yard work, gardening, walking the dog, playing with children, recreational sports, and tackling home improvement projects.
Here are tips on how to have an active lifestyle:
- Take at least one walk a day
- Stretch when you wake up and before bed
- Take desk breaks - Set a timer and make sure you stand up to stretch and walk a few minutes every hour.
- Work at a standing desk or swap your desk chair for an exercise ball
- Multi-task tv time - Get on the floor during commercials to do no-equipment exercises like planks, pushups, crunches, and leg lifts.
- Park farther away
- Take the stairs when possible
- Have a dance party to your favorite tunes
- Walk around while you chat on the phone
- Take up an outdoor hobby
- Track your steps with an app or pedometer
- Add movement into your daily routines - Try doing a few sets of calf raises while you brush your teeth or squats while you wait for your coffee to brew.
Healthy 7-Day Meal Plan with Chomps snacks
A healthy diet helps you feel energized so you can be more active. Here are 7 days of healthy meal and snack ideas:
Breakfast: Greek yogurt with walnuts, chia seeds, and berries
Lunch: Egg salad lettuce wraps with grapes
Snack: Chomps Original Beef meat stick and an apple
Dinner: Beans and rice
Breakfast: Avocado toast topped with a fried egg
Lunch: Lentil soup with a whole grain roll
Snack: Veggies and hummus
Dinner: Beef and broccoli stir-fry with cauliflower fried rice
Breakfast: Oatmeal topped with peanut butter and banana
Lunch: Greek salad with grilled chicken
Snack: Two hard-boiled eggs and an orange
Dinner: Pork tenderloin with roasted vegetables and potatoes
Breakfast: Veggie egg scramble, turkey bacon, and a slice of whole-grain toast
Lunch: Cobb salad
Snack: Chomps Pepperoni Seasoned Turkey meat stick and mozzarella string cheese
Dinner: Baked tilapia with asparagus and rice pilaf
Breakfast: Chia pudding and berries
Lunch: Tuna melt on whole grain bread with baby carrots and cucumber slices
Snack: Apple with almond butter
Dinner: Mediterranean bowls with grilled chicken, quinoa, veggies, and tzatziki
Breakfast: Smoothie made with milk, yogurt, greens, frozen fruit, and nut butter
Lunch: Vegetable beef soup with half a turkey sandwich
Snack: Chomps Original Turkey meat stick and trail mix
Dinner: Whole grain or lentil pasta with turkey meatballs and a side salad
Breakfast: Cottage cheese with berries
Lunch: Shrimp burrito bowl
Snack: Veggies and guacamole
Dinner: Grilled flank steak with sweet potato wedges and snap peas
Healthy Snack Ideas
Including a snack or two between meals can help manage hunger, reduce food cravings, and prevent overeating at mealtimes. The best snacks to satisfy your hunger include a combination of protein, fiber, and healthy fat. These three nutrients increase satiety so you feel fuller for longer and provide long-lasting energy.
Pre-packaged snacks are convenient, but many are not healthy choices. Instead of chips, pretzels, and candy, look for protein-rich snacks made with quality ingredients.
Chomps meat sticks are an excellent grab-and-go snack made from grass-fed beef and free-range turkey. They come in 9 flavors, like Italian Style Beef and Jalapeno Turkey, and each one provides about 10 grams of protein with no added sugar. Try pairing a meat stick with a serving of fruit, cheese, or crackers for a filling snack.
Here are 8 more healthy snack ideas:
- Apple slices with almond butter
- Banana and a handful of almonds
- String cheese with whole-grain or grain-free crackers
- Veggies (carrots, celery, cucumber, bell peppers, etc.) with hummus or guacamole
- Hard-boiled eggs with fruit or veggies
- Edamame and pistachios
- Brown rice cakes with avocado and cucumber slices
- Plain Greek yogurt and berries
Finding ways to be more active pays off with health benefits. Having an active lifestyle can help reduce your risk of illness, improve your mood, and help you maintain a healthy weight.
Your diet can enhance the benefits of active living even more. Eating three healthy meals a day plus snacks gives you the energy you need to stay active. Chomps meat sticks are a convenient, portable, and protein-rich option to make healthy snacking easier. Discover your favorite Chomps flavors in our store.