1) Stop buying processed foods. Seriously, stop it! If it has high fructose corn syrup or hydrogenated soybean oil, it’s off limits – make that a rule for yourself. By doing this, you’ll realize that you don’t need that in your diet. Plus, once you get used to eating REAL food, you won’t crave the other stuff as much – but if you do, there are tons of companies that are making healthier versions of old favorites. Just read the labels! (These Quinoa Chips are so. good.)
2) Cool it with the sugar. This is a big one, because most people don’t realize how much sugar they actually consume on a daily basis. It’s not just in chocolate and cookies – it’s also in soda, yogurt, cereal, bottled salad dressing, granola bars… and the worst part? It’s SO bad for you. The new year is a great time to look at what you eat every day and see what you can cut out or replace. Again, there are so many natural sweeteners (maple syrup, honey, dates) and brands that don’t add sugar or chemicals to their products. And I might have a few good recipes for when you just need something sweet 😉 | Coconut Oil Fudge | Vegan Cinnamon Frosting | Peanut Butter Snowballs
3) Move your body. Ok ok maybe exercising isn’t your thing, but we all need to move our bodies in some way every day. I won’t tell you which way is right for you, as long as you move! Take the stairs up to your apartment, go for a walk, do an online video or crunches before bed – but make sure you are moving every day and try to work up a sweat at least a couple times a week.
4) Schedule your workouts. If you’re actively looking to loose weight or tone up, then this point is more for you than the last one. I definitely need to work out to stay in shape (I don’t understand those other crazies!), and the biggest thing I’ve learned is to not feel sorry for taking that time for myself – and you shouldn’t either! Start by scheduling a few classes or trips to the gym into your calendar. Stick to them and treat those calendar blocks as if they were conference calls or coffee dates with friends. Once you get in a routine with workouts that you (even somewhat) enjoy, you’ll find that your body and mind crave it. I’ve found that scheduling these in keeps me healthier, happier, more confident and more productive. Boom.
5) Be nice to yourself. This is broad, I know, but it’s true. Listen to your body. Try to get more sleep. Drink more water. Don’t get mad at yourself after an indulgent meal – just plan workouts and healthier meals for the rest of the week. No one is perfect and no body is perfect, but this is the only body you’ve got. Be good to it!