It’s my first blog post, and I have literally hundreds of ideas of content that I want to share with you. But it’s also Monday … the Monday after Cinco de Mayo, no less … and Mondays are a great time to get a fresh start on a healthy and active life.
Did you overdo it on the food or drinks this weekend? Have you fallen off of the workout wagon? Are you not feeling great about your body or your health? We can be so hard on ourselves, and (trust me, I know from experience!) those negative thoughts can quickly lead to a downward spiral of “I’ll never reach my goals” or “I’ve eaten a chocolate bar now, might as well eat 4 more tomorrow.”
Don’t let yourself get sucked into that spiral! The very best thing you can do is give yourself a fresh start. No need to wait until next year, next week, tomorrow … just start over, right now, and commit to being a little bit healthier than you were before.
Here are three quick things you can do to give yourself a fresh start right now:
It’s that simple: Drink … More … Water! There are thousands of studies highlighting the benefits of water and telling you exactly how much water you should drink, but I’ll save you the time … I truly believe that almost all of us could benefit from drinking more water. I could (and likely will) dedicate an entire post to the benefits of drinking water, but for now, suffice it to say that water can help speed up weight loss, eliminate/ reduce cravings, clear up skin issues, improve digestion, increase energy, improve exercise performance, and flush out toxins. We often don’t pay attention to how much water we’re drinking, but drinking only when you’re thirsty might not be enough if your body has gotten used to being dehydrated. So here’s my challenge to you … drink a glass of water right now, and then count how much water you drink in a full day. Doesn’t have to be scientific, you can say “64 ounces” or “5 refills of my favorite pink cup.” Tomorrow, drink more than you did today. And repeat for a whole week!
Again, I’ll restrain myself against waxing on about the benefits of vegetables for now, because I believe almost all of us could benefit from eating more vegetables. And I don’t mean the “potatoes” and “tomatoes” that went into your French fries and ketchup! I am a huge fan of vegetables, and some of my favorites include broccoli, kale, Brussels sprouts, mushrooms, bell peppers, asparagus, and spinach. I generally try to fill at least half of my lunch and dinner plates with non-starchy vegetables, and am full of creative ways to sneak them into snacks, and even breakfast! But, we’ll get to all of that in time. For this week, all I challenge you to do is make a conscious effort to include two extra servings of vegetables every day. Order a side salad, choose green beans instead of mashed potatoes, slice up a bell pepper for a snack, or sneak them in any other way you can.
I’m certainly not recommending that you jump into a marathon training program if you’ve been hanging out on the couch for the past five years, and I don’t need you to hit the elliptical machine for 90 minutes today, either. All I’m asking is that you move – just a little bit – every day this week. Do 10 minutes of sit-ups, push-ups, and jumping jacks in your hotel room, go for a 20 minute walk at lunch, or crank up the radio and throw yourself a private dance party for 15 minutes before you cook dinner. There’s no better time to start than today, and I can almost guarantee that you’ll have more energy when you finished than you did before you started.
So tell me in the comments … can you commit to these three small changes this week? How much water do you drink every day? What other healthy tips to you use when you need a fresh start? (And feel free to “subscribe” by entering your email address on the right sidebar!)