Living a Healthy Lifestyle
“Free advice straight from the heart!
And, who doesn’t love free advice, right?”
– The Uphill Skater –
Nobody really loves free advice, but you have to admit that most often it comes straight from the heart. I have some excellent free advice for you today, and it is truly straight from my heart because I believe it will make a difference. I have been reading about and researching the New Year, and did you know more resolutions are made in February than in January.
I am not implying that those of us who failed in January are taking yet another shot at it, I’m just saying … okay, I guess that is what I am implying. But good for you—and me— for not giving up! Better late than never, so here is my February Cupid’s arrow loaded with simple free advice and shot directly to the heart. These nuggets of tender loving concern are baby steps toward living your best life.
Eat your five servings of fruits and vegetables every day. This is not hard since a serving is only a half cup. Measure it out, and you will see. Also, try some new foods to fill that quota if you’re up to it. Try (God forbid!) leeks or kale. Try to eat a few plant-based meals per week—start with one if that’s all you can muster. There are tons of good plant-based recipes online.
Prep makes pep: As soon as you get home from the grocery store, wash, cut, chop, and bag your produce and put it in the fridge. When fruits and veggies are ready-to-eat it makes it just as easy to grab a handful of raspberries as potato chips!
Write it down: Make a list of meals and foods that you already eat and enjoy. Do not fill the list with healthy foods you think you should be eating but don’t like—this is truly the kiss of death on any eating plan. Review your list and honestly pick your top ten healthy favorites. This is your starting point! The best way to build new habits is to tack something new onto something you’re already doing. So, if your favorite dishes include rice, go ahead and make them, but try substituting riced cauliflower in place of white rice, even if for only one meal. Baby steps can turn into permanent changes if you don’t overwhelm yourself.
Pre and post workout: No matter what you do for exercise, always remember to warm up before and stretch after for at least five minutes. Develop a stretch routine just like you have for your work out routine, and do it just as faithfully. Whether you walk, do a big gym workout, run, swim or whatever else, it is very important to warm up your muscles and move your body in ways that remove any stiffness. So many injuries could be prevented if people would just remember this.
Two bites for one: I am combining these two bits of advice because they are both pieces of the same “pizza.” 1. Try your best not to snack. 2. A good way to do this is to journal. It is amazing how hard it is to write down the words a handful of potato chips and half a Snickers bar when you journal your daily intake. For some reason, it’s much easier to write about carrots or Atkins bars. Snacking can add more calories to your day than your meals if you are not careful, and calories count! The other part of this equation is to become conscious of and actively try to break a bad habit. Maybe your bad habit is not snacking, but rather it is TV sitting for hours at a time, or playing computer games by the hour. Whatever it is, look at it, set a goal, and work on it!
Evaluate yourself: My final word on all of this is simple—evaluate yourself. How are you doing? You know better than anyone what is right for your body and what’s not. What has to happen for you to feel and look your best? Ask yourself the big questions and decide what you want for your health and well-being. Then, stay true to your desicion, and make it happen. Perhaps, this is the best free advice of them all.
Visit www.skatinguphill.com blog for new recipes, daily thoughts and décor ideas. Also find reprints of Pink articles and shared comments. Blogging is fun and easy.
Judith Lawrenson is a former Hilton Head Island resident who has a huge heart and is loved by all who meet her. She has served and volunteered with numerous charitable organizations while living in the Lowcontry making an impact wherever she went. She and her husband recently moved to the wild hills of West Virginia to be closer to grandchildren. Judith is an avid sailor, a retired reading resource specialist, and a children's TV host whose local show originated from the Boys and girls Club. Judith is also a long time seeker of healthy, happy living and a lifestyle dedicated to service to others balanced with love of God and love of self. Check out her BLOG www.skatinguphill.com for fun info, recipes and nutrition ideas, current updates on nearly everything in the world, and lots of comments and opinions.