Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Healthy living starts today!

I have been having a lot of conversations with my fabulous roommate, Lauren, about healthy living, making excuses, and the hardships of time management and I have some tips. Hopefully they will be helpful for those of you beginning or working on a healthy living regimen.

First and foremost, make this lifestyle a priority. Yes, sleep is valuable. Yes, sleep plays a large part in being healthy, maintaining strong mental health, and losing weight. But, if the only time you can fit in a workout is 6am, then wake up at 5:30 and get it out of the way! Because exercise is a priority to me I plan each of my days and make sure that exercise is included in my schedule. I aim to exercise in the morning that way I can still do fun things after work and can make spur of the moment plans without having to miss out on anything.

Secondly, and my biggest struggle, portion control. There are a billion and one competing dietary facts out there. Whole grain vs. white bread, organic vs. non-organic, low fat vs. low calorie, meat vs. vegetarian, and so on and so on. And through all of my tests and trials and personal research, I think that the best guideline is portion control. If you limit any food in particular (that you love) then you will end up binging on it later (e.g. peanut butter for me!! Cookies, ice cream, etc). But as long as you have a bit of each food group in your diet and expend more calories than you consume, you will be happy, healthy, and probably losing weight. (I do however thing whole grains are better than white enriched, unbleached flour…BUT if your options are limited, just use good portion control techniques).

Lastly, don’t beat yourself up over things. Just because you went off your diet for dinner doesn’t mean your entire day of exercise and healthy eating should go to crap and you should either be upset or pig out on dessert. If you do feel like you went off your diet too much then just add some extra cardio to your workout the next day. But I believe that when you start to get angry with yourself then you fall off your healthy living path and give up. Every day is a new day and a new opportunity to be healthy.

My golden rules:
- Find an activity that you ENJOY!!! Running and zumba aren’t for everyone!
- Drink lots of water
- Be stronger than your excuses
- Know what you are eating and have the power to say no.
- Make it a priority
- DON’T wait until “Monday” or “tomorrow”…your health starts today!

Hope this helps :)

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