7 steps to a healthier lifestyle.
Who doesn’t want to live a healthy life? There is so much information out there and when you’re just trying to jump on the health train, finding a place to start can be overwhelming. You don’t need to go crazy and change your entire life all at once, but there are some things you can do to start living a healthier lifestyle. You’ll find that once you start changing small things, this will motivate you to start adding more and more changes. Being healthy, eating healthy, losing weight, whatever your goals are, I cannot stress enough, all require lifestyle changes!!!! Below are seven, practically painless things you can do that will make a difference in the long run.
If you don’t have a Pinterest account, get one…NOW! Pinterest is not just for the savvy super mom or fabulous party planners! Almost all my recipes I find are from Pinterest! You can search just about every single category you can imagine! Create boards (that you can keep private or public) in groups of types of foods. Such as breakfast, quick dinners, healthy treats, Greek food, German food, the list goes on. Then start searching. What I usually do is I search by the type of meat I want to cook with. I have two packages of chicken breast but have no clue what I can make that’s healthy and quick! I search “healthy chicken recipes” and Vola! What’s really great about Pinterest is that people can leave comments or suggestions and even post pictures if they’ve made the recipe. So when I find something that looks good and comments are positive, I have a winner. There really is no excuse, if you can read and follow directions it’s basically fool proof! The other night I found a recipe for pesto chicken. Simplest dish ever, required 5 mins prep time, 35 mins cook time, it was amazing and oh so healthy! I cannot stress the importance of using Pinterest for starting to live a healthier life!
I’m sorry, I know you’re busy, but this is a must and there is really no way to have a healthy life if you can’t figure out how to prepare some simple healthy foods. Quick diets promising quick results are great, but you have to remember in order to maintain any kind of weight loss, there will be lifestyle changes that must happen! Did I mention how Pinterest will be your best friend?
3. Food swapping!
Ok this is really a simple step to ease you into eating healthier. Take a look at your current routine for foods you eat. Where can you make some small changes? Example, white bread? Swap it out for whole wheat/whole grain. My mother is a very picky eater, and by picky I mean she eats like 5 foods and they’re all processed and terrible for you. She is battling cancer and food is probably one of the biggest components to keeping one strong through this. I sat down with her and went through some little changes she can make, changes that won’t feel so drastic but will become habits for her soon enough. She loves scrambled eggs. So, throwing a handful of spinach would do wonders for her. Hard boil some eggs and eat those throughout the day for extra proteins. There is even flavorless protein powder you can mix in your food or drink just add some extra protein as well. All taking very little effort but can be very beneficial.
4. Frozen food!
Ok so frozen food sounds processed and awful but that’s not what I’m talking about. Try to pick up some extra meat when you’re at the grocery store. I always have several packages of skinless, boneless, thin chicken breasts in my freezer as well as some packages of lean ground beef. If you always keep some on rotating stock in your freezer then you won’t be tempted to order a pizza or get a carry out because you don’t have anything to cook. Another thing I always keep in my freezer is frozen veggies such a broccoli florets and peppers. This way I know I always have a vegetable that I can serve with my dinner.
5. Water, water and more water!
Sounds so simple right? Swap out your usual drinks for water! Skip the juice, the soda, the quick gas station drinks and just grab a water! I have a 1 liter bottle that I fill with water. I take it everywhere with me and refill at least once. My goal is to drink at least 2L of water a day, so this really helps me keep track of my intake. A good rule of thumb is to drink half your body weight of water in ounces a day. So if you weigh 200lbs. You should drink 100 ounces or about 3 liters of water a day. Water can also help to curb your appetite. So if you’re focused on cutting calories or weight loss, you’ll definitely want to make sure you are drinking lots of water!
6. Physical activity!
This is an obvious one, however what if you’re new to the workout world? Sometimes fitting in an hour of “gym time” during the day can be difficult. Here’s a great way to get that time in, without feeling like you did the time! Start with this simple rule: For every hour you are sitting, get up and do 5 minutes of a brisk walk. I don’t mean walking casually around. I mean, get those arms swinging and walking fast! Let’s say you spend 8 hours a day at a desk. If you follow this rule than you will have gotten in 40 mins of walking for the day, do that 5 times a week, that’s 200 minutes of physical activity that you didn’t have before. Sounds so simple right?
7. Get more sleep!!!
Sleep is so undervalued these days. There never seems to be enough hours in the day. However sleep is essential to living a healthy lifestyle! It’s not very likely that any one of us can go to bed hours earlier every night, it’s just not possible. If you can slowly acclimate yourself to more sleep, it’s more likely you will feel those benefits, without feeling like you’re losing time. Try going to bed earlier by 5 minutes each night. Work yourself into an earlier bedtime until you reach the 7-9 minimum hours that are recommended for adults.