What’s going on with your fitness routine? Where are you at with it? If you’re on the up swing- that’s awesome, stick with it. If you’re not, why not? What happened to hitting the gym this week? Did Monday quickly turn into Friday and the evenings faded away under a glow from the television set? Is that you? Turn it off, better yet, cancel the service. There is an epidemic of unhealthy bodies in this country and it’s caused by an epidemic of “don’t feel like it.”
The weight loss industry is huge, and, unfortunately, so is the propensity for the average person to not comply, over the long term, with their plans to eat right and exercise often. Those organic fruits, vegetables and raw foods don’t eat themselves and exercise doesn’t happen by osmosis. Despite the ridiculous tactics portrayed in most of the marketing (propaganda) churned out by the weight loss industry ad wizards, a healthy body weight is not the product of shortcuts or nightly 12 oz. curls. Provide your body with nutrition and keep it physically fit, that’s it. It’s been said that 90% of success is just showing up. If you’ve been slacking off on showing up, here are a few quick tips to get you back on track and make your intentions your reality.
1. Eat and Eat Well
Calorie consumption isn’t a 0 sum game, your body needs a certain amount of calories to operate. “Ate a 100 calorie snack, burned 100 calories on the treadmill, awesome!” is not the philosophy to live by. Skipping meals and severely limiting calories won’t provide your body the nutrition it needs. The key is to eat organic fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds. Skip the chips, throw away the prepackaged junk. If you’re indulging in low-quality fast foods, stop it immediately. That toxic sewage isn’t going to provide your body the essential vitamins and minerals it needs.
2. Eat Appropriate Portions
Portion control is an area many adults fail at (underscoring the importance of developing these habits early). Before helping yourself to seconds, ask yourself if you’re really even hungry, or just reaching for another scoop out of habit. It’s not necessary to completely deprive yourself of the foods you love, just limit their portion size. Instead of eating it all tonight, it might make a great left over lunch tomorrow.
3. Eat On a Seat
Eating on the run is an easy way to lose your momentum. Why? Because eating on the run is often eating food purchased out of convenience, which means little planning and a high likelihood of it being from a fast food restaurant, vending machine, or gas station. Plan your meals so that you can sit down, relax and enjoy your food. If you do need a snack to go, nature provides a number of choices in natural, biodegradable wrappers- apples, bananas, and plums, are already perfectly packaged and easy to eat when time is tight.
4. Eat With Your Family
Support each other as a family in your quest to eat in a healthy way and exercise regularly. Your parents, offspring, or siblings can benefit from nutritious foods too, so keep them on hand and hold each other accountable. Be the example in your family, set the bar. When everyone is on track, it’s easier to resist tempting foods, such as sodas, chips, candy, and cookies. Or, even better…
5. Avoid Temptations
The easiest way to avoid the temptations of less-than-healthy foods is just to keep the house free of temptations, period. You’ll be surprised how true, “out of sight, out of mind” really is. Instead, keep the pantry stocked with fruits, veggies and whole grain snacks.
6. Roll With It
It’s important to understand everyone occasionally trips and falls. You may be out for your birthday and have a second piece of cake. You may be out to dinner with an old friend and indulge a little more than normal. These things happen, they’re called life, just don’t let these special occasions get ahead of you. The rarity of special occasions is what makes them special. The cumulative effect of complying with a solid daily-life plan is what sets you up for more enjoyable special occasions. It’s easier for your body to absorb the occasional indiscretion when you’re on track the other 90% of the time. Never focus on perceived failures, only on successes you’ve had and the successes you are still working to achieve.