How to Make Healthy a Lifestyle
The struggles of living a healthy lifestyle are no joke! Not only do you have to physically be ready for change, but you must also be mentally ready. Unfortunately, we all wait until things have gotten a little out of hand and are ready for the physical change, BUT then we cannot seem to mentally get on the same page. I am someone who is VERY guilty of that! If there is one good thing that has come from this pandemic, it's simply the fact that I got healthy, both physically and mentally.
I learned a lot along my journey and continue to learn more and more every day, and if you are someone like me who needs that extra boost, I am here to try and be that guide for you! I am here to help you make healthy into a lifestyle and to show you it's easier than it seems. Baby steps!
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Step 1: Monitor Your Sleep
You have probably heard repeatedly how monitoring your sleep is extremely helpful . . . well I’m going to have to tell you that they're right! I started monitoring my sleep, reluctantly may I add, and I honestly learned so much! I already knew that I tossed and turned a lot, but I learned how much sleep I was losing and I was astonished. Because I started monitoring my sleep, I was able to adjust my sleep habits and make sure that I am getting at least 8 hours of sleep each night.
Everyone is different and you may not need a full 8 hours. But by monitoring your sleep, you can adjust your habits and let your body get the natural amount that it needs. You should be waking up on your own feeling refreshed and awake.
To monitor my sleep, I use my Apple Watch. I know that wearing it all day and then all night can really irritate your skin so I would suggest taking it off when you’re sitting down relaxing and not moving around, when you shower, and when you’re getting ready in the morning. This will give that skin some room to breathe!
Step 2: DON’T Skip Breakfast
I am not a breakfast person and still struggle with eating a balanced breakfast first thing in the morning, so I understand how hard it is to adjust to eating breakfast every morning! But if you want to have energy throughout the day and burn that pesky fat, then this is a MUST. Your body needs the protein first thing in the morning to jumpstart your metabolism. If you don’t give your body that protein to convert into energy you're going to remain tired all morning and your body will have nothing to consume to burn off fat, so in return, it's going to store more fat when you finally do eat.
Now I am not talking about some big hearty meal first thing in the morning. Something simple as a couple of eggs or a parfait with yogurt, granola, and fruit are both great options and easy!
Step 3: Exercise
You could be getting enough sleep and eating right, but if you do not take some time out of your day to exercise then you can only achieve so much. Exercising not only speeds up your metabolism so you can burn more fat, and look and feel good physically, but it also keeps your organs running in good shape which is vital to life itself.
Personally, I am not a gym person. So I find other ways to exercise whether it's a pilates class or hiking a new trail. You could simply go for a walk in the evenings. 30 minutes, 3 to 4 times a week is a great place to start.
Not only do I start to feel good physically, despite the soreness, but I have noticed that I have much more mental clarity. I can focus better at work, I have more energy throughout the day, and I enjoy my pilates class or hike more and more every time. Now, this isn’t going to happen right away, but if you stick with it, within a couple of weeks you should start to see improvements physically and mentally.
Step 4: Make Sure You Are Eating Lunch and Dinner
Your body needs that constant source of fuel to convert to energy and burn fat. Make sure you’re getting enough protein, but don’t overdo it on portion sizing! There are tons of sources out there to figure out which is the right portion size for you! Every person is different depending on age, body weight, body fat percentage, how much weight you are wanting to lose, if you ware wanting to maintain the weight you’re at, and so much more factors involved. My favorite source to make sure you’re getting the RIGHT information is to go to a licensed nutritionist.
Remember, baby steps! Focus on one step at a time and then every week or every two weeks add a step. Getting enough sleep, exercising, and eating right are the key ingredients to physically and mentally being your best self. YOU GOT THIS!