1. Set Realistic Goals
Telling yourself you are going to be gracing the cover of that fitness mag in 6 weeks after not doing any exercise for 5 years is just the beginning of the end. If you have been leading an unhealthy lifestyle for a long time, it is going to take a time and effort to see results. Set goals, reach them and you will stick with it until the end.
2. Water, Water, Water
Our bodies, organs and skin need are made up of a whopping 75% water. Even if you do not do any exercise, live in an igloo and haven’t sweated in 18 months, your body needs 2 liters of water to function at all. That is just 8 glasses of water a day. If you do any exercise or are outside in the sun, you will need to up that amount considerably. Water flushes out toxins, helps our digestive system work properly, keeps our skin looking gorgeous, and balances out our energy levels. Kick start your new lifestyle by keeping a bottle of water with you all day, in the car, in your bag, in the office. Even if you only get through one bottle to start with, it’s a good start.
3. Cut Back
Normally have two helpings of mashed potato? Make a new rule to have a smaller portion of everything– but one only and never go back for more. So you will be able to enjoy everything on the table, the mouth-watering gravy, buttered carrots and the delicious pudding, but in moderation.
4. Get Moving
Collapsing into the couch after work is a bad habit to get into. And the age-old excuse of ‘I don’t’ have time’, doesn’t cut it anymore. Active people don’t have time either, but they make time. If you can make time to get to the happy hour or sports game, you can make time for exercise. There are so many videos and exercise programs you can download from the Internet free of charge or you can do a few hours of yoga from your bedroom. 20 minutes of sweat time, 3 times a week and you will be feeling fab in no time. Walk the dog; drag the family out into the fresh air – rain and shine – no excuses.
5. Write Down Everything you Eat
We all think we eat healthily, but once you start writing down everything you eat during the day, you could be in for a surprise. No wonder you can’t shift those pounds – you are eating 12 slices of bread a day! Keep a food diary and record your emotions at the time, you will be surprised at how many emotional triggers send us reaching for the candy or doughnuts. Once you are clear about your eating patterns you can start changing them.
6. Ditch the Junk Food
Clear your fridge and pantry of all the junk – dont wait to finish it, just clear it, banish the chips, cookies and candies. Replace them with healthy snacks like vegetable chips, rice cakes, salt free crackers, nuts, popcorn and dried fruit. Snacking is healthy, as long as it’s not loaded with calories. It will be hard at first but after 2 weeks you will never look back.
7. Double Up on Veg!!!
Vegetables are an integral part of any healthy eating plan. Preferably RAW. Juice them. Blend them. They have lots of vitamins and minerals and natural healthy fiber which fill you up for longer. Have at least 3 portions a day, keep them around, especially the green and colorful ones. Resist the urge to drown veggies in cheesy or creamy sauces and instead use fresh herbs, lemon, black pepper and a sprinkling of nuts or feta to get your flavors.
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A happy person is not a person in a certain set of circumstances, but rather a person with a certain set of attitudes. ~Hugh Downs
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