We all know life in the Middle East moves fast - sometimes too fast - and in the blink of an eye your body can easily become a little softer than you would like it to be. Early mornings and late nights in the office, brunches, food delivery apps at your fingertips, the ever-tempting Netflix-n-chill, and other alluring distractions loom around every corner of your life but that doesn’t mean you can’t make minor changes to make your journey to a healthier and happier you more manageable (and enjoyable!). With that said here are some tips that can help you on your way.
Set smaller, more achievable goals.
If you have one, big vague or unrealistic goal in mind, you’re setting yourself up for failure and frustration from the get go. Start slow and work towards a new bite-sized goal each month. For example, if you haven’t been active or eating healthfully, create goals that reflect your starting point. Trying to go to gym seven days a week and eat only kale probably isn’t the best idea. Instead, commit to moving more three to four days a week and cutting out your worst nutritional habit, like fast food.
Don’t rush your timeline.
Keep the faith and follow the plan you create for yourself. By focusing on short-term goals, as mentioned above, you’re more likely to experience mini successes along the way that will keep you fired up and motivated to continue.
Beware of negative emotions.
If you wake up one day and feel blah or uninspired, let it out. Tell one person you can trust, then try to get back to a positive place. Fear creates anger and frustration. So, believe in yourself. If you follow the plan and stay disciplined, you’ll reach your goals.
Create a nutrition strategy.
Food is a hugely important part of any get-healthy goal, but can we all agree to ditch the word “diet” for now? It has so many negative connotations. Think about creating a nutrition strategy instead. Here are some basic rules to follow, regardless of whether you’re vegan or eat animal products:
Eat food that is as close to it’s original form as possible (i.e. potatoes vs. potato chips.
Only eat until you are full.
Avoid processed sugary drinks and foods.
Use food as fuel and not as something to self-medicate with.
When offered something unhealthy, say “I don’t eat that” instead of “I can’t eat that.”
When faced with temptation, ask yourself, “How is this food serving me and my goals?”
Prep meals ahead of time whenever you can. For instance, if you’re cooking a healthy dinner, make extra food to take to work the next day.
Drink plenty of water
Staying hydrated can also help you maintain a healthy weight and prevent overeating, so make sure to take your water bottle to the dinner table and sip H20 at lunchtime. A 2016 study of more than 18,000 adults showed that those who upped their water intake by one, two or three glasses per day consumed fewer calories, as well as less saturated fat, sodium, and sugar.
Get adequate & regular sleep
If you get a regular bedtime you may notice many body benefits throughout the day (and beyond). You may notice you have better energy and more focus. You may notice that you get sick less often. You may make better dietary choices, and find that you can exercise more often and at higher intensities, because regular sleep supports these metabolic, mental and physical systems. Also, implementing a rule to disconnect from digital devices 30 minutes before bed can greatly lower time spent falling asleep and improve sleep quality.
Track your progress.
So much of health is about how you feel, so having an objective log of your journey can be an immense help. If you feel down one day, flip through the Steps and Exercise logs in your Fitbit app for proof that you’re making strides. And most of all, remember the words attributed to the Chinese philosopher, Lao Tzu: The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Whatever your goals are, you can do it. Just take that first step.
Start Your Journey
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