This is a 5-part series on getting healthy once and for all! Forget resolutions, they are so last century! This year, healthy inspiration will help you increase your well-being! Read on for how to make 2016 your healthiest year ever (no matter how less than stellar January may have been!)
Resolutions are like diets: they usually don't last enough to make long term changes. To make lasting change, take small, tiny steps every day and you will see that at the end of the year, your life will have changed for the better! Use this list for inspiration!
1.Get a pedometer: Trust me, I'm a walker already, and this makes me walk more. Works for all levels of fitness. My fave is the very simple Fitbit Zip. Unlike the in-your-face bracelet pedometers, no one needs to know you're wearing it.
2.Cinnamon: If you like the flavor of cinnamon, keep it near the counter top: helps keep blood sugar regulated. Yummy. Better than sugar.
3.Find an activity you love: If it's tennis then find a club and get a friend to play; if you don't like running, don't add it to your "must do" list. Be realistic. Do active things that you like! Life is too short. Time is too precious to spend it doing stuff you don't like and don't have to do!
4.Start small: Goals are great, but make your first goal a tiny one. For example "lose one pound" or "get my running shoes on in the morning" as opposed to "lose 20 pounds" and "run a marathon this year". Experts agree this is the way to go to get started and keep motivated!
5.Axe processed food: Instead of quitting sugar totally or never eating anything rich, try reducing your purchase and intake of processed food (breakfast cereals! cookies from a package!) and go to a bakery when you want a treat (preferably one that makes their own fresh treats). A great book that explains why we shouldn't eat processed food and how to quit eating it is my favorite "10-day Detox" by Dr. Mark Hyman. Awesome, inspiring.
6.Don't house it: If non-nutritious food is in your house, you might eat it. Just don't bring it in!
7.Dry Brush: This is my favorite wellbeing habit of all. Talk about helping with circulation, blood flow, draining the lymphatic system and more. On top of which it feels totally amazing and invigorating to begin the day.
8.Kids on board: Your kids might be involved in sports, but you can make fitness part of everyday life like walking or biking to school, weekend outdoor activities with the family (try hiking, scootering around a local park).
9.Kids propose healthy meal once a week: Involve your children in menu planning and allow them to decide a healthy dinner menu once a week. Even if they insist on hamburgers or hotdogs, make them healthier by buying best ingredients possible, adding veggies on the side, choosing whole wheat breads.
10.Water for all: Year in and year out, this is on my list every January to conquer ASAP: Drink More Water. Make it the only drink at the family dinner table. Why offer sodas, sugary drinks, even fruit juice at the table, when water will do? The list of benefits are endless. For me the biggest motivators for drinking more water are: great skin, feel more energized, less cravings for bad food or eating outside of mealtimes.
11.Vacations: Vacations don't just have to include sitting down on a beach towel and eating more food than normal. When planning a holiday, keep physical activities front and center and plan around them. Ask your kids what they want to try and plan them before arriving!
12.Snacks: If you're like me there is no way you're making it to dinner time without a snack. To keep it healthy plan in advance! Know in the morning what you're going to eat all day, even snack time. Some things to try: small bowl of oatmeal with cinnamon; apple (handy when you're about town and need something portable), almond butter on a slice rye bread; avocado with lemon and salt; slice of smoked salmon on rye bread; miso soup cup.
13.Food journal: This is such a great idea! Not only what you eat/drink/exercise, but also just some thoughts on how you are feeling; what food makes you feel good/not good; your thoughts on fitness and how it makes you feel. Reread past entries and adapt your life accordingly.
14.Schedule it: Sunday nights are my "Filofax" night (yes, I'm a paper and pen geek). Plan out your fitness, menus and healthy habits once a week and schedule them and add reminders on your phone or your planner.
Stay tuned for Part 2 of this series!