Since my last post about my fitness update, I thought I’d share some tips on how to stay on track with a healthy lifestyle. Now that I’ve had to jump back into a cleaner diet and have managed to continue to workout 5 times a week for the past 3 months, I just wanted to share what’s worked for me incase you feel like throwing in the towel!
1. Meal prep. This is something I started doing more consistently so that we have lunch and dinner set for us for 2 to 3 days. I’ll just cook a whole bunch of chicken, turkey meatballs, sweet potatoes, roasted veggies, quinoa, whatever at one time and fill the plastic containers up. It just makes life so much easier and gives us less of a chance of ordering something not so healthy.
2. When in doubt, just put your workout gear on. Before I can even think about skipping a workout, I put my workout clothes on. Sometimes, if I can already tell I’m not feeling the exercise vibes in the morning, I put on my workout clothes as soon as I get up and wear them while I run errands. Or right after Ava’s bath time, I change into them so that I can’t decide to just veg out on the couch after putting her to bed. It’s almost like, “Well, I’m already dressed for it, just do it!”
3. Do something you actually enjoy. There is nothing more boring to me than the elliptical. But running was too hard sometimes so I’d always default to the elliptical during my previous fitness forays. My parents actually bought and elliptical machine because I said I’d do use it all the time. Yah, lemme just say here that it’s now a coat rack in my parents’ basement. I think I convinced myself it was the best piece of workout equipment in life because I could do it without hurting my knees and I was losing weight. I had to watch TV to get myself through, but I got it done. If I never get on another elliptical machine again, it will be too soon. I don’t think I realized how much I hate it until doing Zumba and other exercise classes in the past. It’s just so much more fun and I actually enjoy it. And while T25 felt super intense at first, I enjoy the workouts and have managed to consistently workout since starting in April because it doesn’t feel like monotonous torture.
4. Focus on how you feel. I think if I was die hard about the scale, I’d never keep up with the exercise. Like if I realized that all the working out wasn’t actually changing the numbers it would feel discouraging. I really wanted to keep this more about feeling good an being fit, and exercising actually makes me feel good instead of feeling like a chore to me now. With that being said, if you are more focused on weight loss, do weigh yourself more periodically. Not daily if that’s too much, but at least every few days or weekly. Or have a pair of jeans that you use as a measure. It will help you re-evaluate your diet and exercise plan and make adjustments as needed. It’s way too easy to ignore the scale and be in denial.
5. Don’t skip the snacks. Sometimes I forget about snacking or am not prepared and I don’t bring one with me when I’m out. It makes me want to have junk so much more or even overeat on the healthy stuff. Also, don’t kid yourself on the ‘healthy’ snacks. I have an addiction to veggie sticks and I will eat a whole bag. Or portion out some in a bowl then eat 3 bowls because they’re ‘not as bad as chips’. They still have calories and all those extra calories do add up!
I recently picked these up at Target to satisfy my chip cravings. I have fruit along with them since, let’s face it, these aren’t filling me up. Ava even liked them, we finished the whole pack together because she kept begging for more!
6. Work out when you can because you never know when you can’t. We had plans Wednesday night, so I did a workout Sunday which normally is a rest day for me. That way I could skip Sunday, but still get 5 sessions in for the week. For some reason my hip was bothering me on Thursday, but I figured it would be fine by my 9 PM date with Shaun. I even decided to do the ‘easiest’ workout in the set just to be safe. The minute I started to jog, I had to stop, my hip was killing me! And I was actually disappointed, I was all in gear to workout that night. M said to let it go, you’re obviously in pain. So I skipped that night and by the next day I was fine. I’m glad I worked out on Sunday, because I didn’t anticipate I’d have to skip Thursday too! But another important point here is to listen to your body and rest when you need to, especially if you’re in pain. You’re risking further injury pushing yourself through real pain and likely keeping you on the sidelines longer.
Please share any of your tips for staying on track! 🙂