It’s 6:30 AM, and oh I need my morning coffee. I drag myself out of my bed and head straight to my kitchen to grab that mug of instant energy to get me going. Then I get busy with my day-to-day schedule with no time whatsoever to work out. We blame our job, our kids and our tired selves for not finding time to stay active. How do we get ourselves out there and move to feel better, and in turn make the lives of people around us better as well (health improves mood and focus)?
I hear so many friends of mine complaining about not getting the push to start working out or start the healthy diet regime, to get where they want to be. Sunny beach, bikini? Nope – I’m better off in my cover up! It might seem tough, but if you want to see yourself as someone healthy and happening you can do it as well.
10 Steps to a new you
1. First have a clear goal in your mind about what you want to achieve, but remember to be practical, knowing that a healthy weight loss, or getting fit does take time. Anything too quick is usually short lived and harmful.
2. Talk to friends who have the same goal, make a chat group to keep in touch and post pictures to inspire and get inspired. Also take some before and after pictures. Post sweaty post-workout selfies for friends who are in that group. Stay motivated make it FUN!
3. Buy some athletic clothes, yes it helps a ton when you have good-looking clothes. You feel like wearing them and go to the gym or head out for a run. A good pair of shoes are key if you want to take running seriously, so do not skip or skimp on that.
4. Start slow and start EARLY! It does help, when we start early our energy level is at the peak and the early morning air always helps us to feel the best. However do not forget to warm up as it takes a while to get our bodies in the active mode early in the day. Starting with small easy walks always helps us to stay motivated without draining us out till the next workout. Build slowly from there. Add strength and more challenging cardio as you get stronger.
5. Music is another important component, create your favorite workout playlist. I have mine which I have saved under the playlist Run, and I keep updating the list to avoid getting bored.
6. Be regular, whatever you do stay on it, make it a routine. It is the key! Sometimes when its difficult to find time, workout for a few minutes; even ten minutes make a difference and keeps you on that track.
7. Eating is another key component, remember – 80 percent nutrition and 20 percent workout. A lot of health coaches use this formula and it is quite true. the first thing is to get rid of is all the junk food from your kitchen pantry. Stay on track, with home cooked tasty food. Don’t go crazy right in the beginning on super low calorie food. Keep a food log, this really helps. Foods high in healthy fats are the best way to stay full and avoid binge eating. Who doesn’t love to snack on junk specially after a long day when we are really hungry. Eating dense natural foods like nuts, hummus and avocados can help us stay on track. Include a protein in every big meal. Chicken and turkey are great options but lean grass-fed beef is also good. Vegetarian/Vegan options are also available if you stick to foods like nuts, chickpeas, hemp, flax seeds for optimum protein intake.
8. Eating in small portions but more frequently helps us not to binge. the key to lose weight is to EAT and not STARVE! Eat, but eat smart and eat yummy. Use spices and good fats to enhance flavor and taste.
9. There will be times that you lose track specially with vacations or during occasions. Never give up! Know that you can wake up the next morning and start a fresh and some cheat days are absolutely fine and also healthy not to get you frustrated. When on a vacation try to make smart food choice. Choose fresh fruits, salads and more protein. Bananas are another amazing fuel for our body, so keep them handy. If you slip off track in one meal, keep the next lean and healthy. But never get negative and give up.
10. And you need not have access to a gym or a grand outdoor setting – your floor in the living room is perfect! A set of 25 jumping jacks, followed by 20 squats, 30 second planks and 15 push ups can get you rolling.
It is all about quality and not quantity! So little goes a long way. The key is to move and be smart in terms of food choices. With these tips you can start your journey to the new ‘you’ which you have always dreamt of.
Nothing is impossible when you train your brain and learn to have fun and not give up! Happy moving, and remember to say hello to your new self!