Talking to clients over the years, I've heard variations on the same thing - "I want to be able to play with my grandkids", "I want to keep up with my kids", "I'm tired of being tired", "I just want to have my energy back". And on and on. Everyone was saying the same thing - they want to be 'whole healthy and fit'.
You want to wake up in the morning and not need 10 minutes to get out of bed while your joints unlock. You want to be able to get up off the floor with out the help of furniture and 2 people. You want to take the stairs and not be winded. You want to go shopping and know that most of the clothes will not only fit but look good on you. You want to have the energy to tackle what your day brings. You want to feel good about yourself. You want your mojo back!
All of that is 'Whole Healthy and Fit". People hire trainers or begin a fitness routine to lose weight, primarily. And that is fine. Every client I've ever worked with eventually realized that it wasn't about the weight. They wanted to feel good, be healthy and have more energy.
I preach, beg, teach and motivate people to make healthy food choices, be physically active, take time for hobbies, make time for me-time, get periodic massages and try to approach each day as an opportunity to enjoy and live life to the fullest. We get one shot at this; let's make it count!
If you are just starting your health and fitness revolution, this can be daunting. Don't worry, you don't have to tackle it all at once! In fact, DON'T tackle it all at once. Part of 'Whole Healthy and Fit' is mental health and fitness. Tackling all of this will just overwhelm you and frustrate you.
Pick one piece and work on that until you are happy with your progress and habits then add something else. By slowly tackling each component, you are significantly more likely to succeed and stick with it! Let's talk about some strategies for tackling these topics.
Working Out - This is almost always where people start when wanting to get back in shape or be healthier. Of all the topics, it's probably right in the middle as far as difficult goes. But it has WONDERFUL, immediate feedback so it is a great place to begin.
If you are truly just starting out (maybe you've never been active or have taken a long break), start by being just a bit more active than you were yesterday. Going for a walk is a great way to start and is non-impact. Make a daily walk your goal for the next week. Then you can add on to the length of your walk, the intensity or start adding other workouts!
Maybe you've slipped a little and need to get back in your normal routine. Make a plan and WRITE it down. Now stick to your plan for a week. Make a new workout plan for the next week and stick to that. Repeat! Before long you'll be back in your old habits.
Daily "Me" Time - I know, you're all groaning. Who has time for this?? But it is super beneficial for your mental health. Even if it's just 5 minutes, take a time out and do something that brings you happiness and peace. NOT electronics! No phone, no tablet, no computer. Meditate, make a list of what you're grateful for, a quick yoga routine, even just singing along to your favorite song. Weekly goal? 5 minutes per day. This is literally .003% of your day. After a week or two, increase it to 10 minutes.
Water - This one is EASY. Get a 24 oz water bottle and drink at least 3 of them. Mark off how many you've had on your bottle with a dry erase marker.
Attitude - yeah, I know. No one wants to hear "Fix your attitude!" But so much of our day is determined by our moods and so much of our moods are determined by our attitude! Remember that workout plan? Add a section for daily gratitude. Every morning, look at your plan and write down one thing you are happy, grateful, thankful, etc for. That night, write down what was joyful about your day.
Nutrition! - This is everyone's Achilles' Heel. Food is pleasure, stress relief, reward, love and the most mis-used 'drug' out there. Food has the power to prevent just about every disease out there, greatly improve how your body functions, give you energy and make you feel good. The catch, though, is that it's hard to disconnect our emotional connection to food and see it as fuel only. The most frequent tip I give is to learn to eat healthy overall. Have healthy oatmeal for breakfast. Have ONE cookie as a snack. Have a protein filled salad at lunch. Have a high protein snack mid-day and plenty of water. Have 2 drinks at happy hour and no fatty appetizers. Then a yummy dinner. You ate healthy and didn't deprive yourself.
Where to start? Start by ditching the junk in your house. Spend the next week getting rid of sweet stuff, chips, ice cream, processed carbs, etc. Then hit the store for healthy replacements! Need some tips for what to buy? Check out some of my other posts for grocery ideas, recipes, etc.
Next, start by focusing one meal - breakfast. Have a healthy breakfast and you are significantly more likely to eat healthy the rest of the day. Make eating a healthy breakfast a habit then focus on lunch. Keep working your way through the day until you've made healthy eating all day a habit!
Feel like you can tackle this now? Of course you can! Start small and make a PLAN!!