5 SMART Steps to Finding Better Health in Your Day
S – Small steps can add up to big changes
M – Make time daily. Any amount of time can help you stay on track
A – Activity is activity when you are starting from scratch
R – Read Labels beyond fats, protein and carbohydrates.
T – Try new things until you find exercise you like
Small – Regardless of your current level of activity, adding small changes can make a lot of difference. It is the small change that can make the difference between Olympic Gold and Olympic “also ran”. The small changes you can be the difference between your weight loss or your weight gain. Something as small as choosing peanut butter with just peanuts and peanut butter with added sugar will effect you differently.
Make time daily- When we make time for exercise every day then we remind our subconscious that exercise feels good and is actually what our body wants to do. Daily exercise can improve cardiovascular, muscular and brain function.
Activity is Activity- Don’t expect vacuuming your house to help you run a marathon but you can definitely count it as activity. As an incentive do it for time. Rake your own yard. Take the stairs, but do it quickly and do it often for faster results.
Read Food Labels – We all know the basics around Fat, Protein and Carbohydrates but the story is not as crystal clear as you might think. The real devil is in the detail of the labels. Read the ingredients taking note of ingredients like modified corn starch, dextrose, sucrose, canola, carageenan and the dreaded Hydrogenated. These ingredients are known to cause heart disease, cancer or at the very least inflammation.
Try New Exercise – Though running is one of the best time exercises you can do for quick weight loss it may not be enjoyable for everyone. If you hate an exercise then it is doubtful you will want to do it enough to make it part of your everyday life. Don’t give up on the first try of something but don’t stick with something you detest just because you see results. Try swimming, weights, CrossFit, home exercise videos, yoga or just about anything for a couple weeks just to see if it is for you. Just like trying anything new, if a workout is so foreign to you that you feel awkward, allow yourself to not be good at it a few times, you will get better and just may see some results.
If you are trying to get some more healthy habits in your day then remember to start with only 1. The statistics show that you will quit due to frustration if you try to incorporate more than 1 habit at a time. Do not try to change your diet AND start exercising regularly, you will drop both. Do start with exercise. Make exercising part of your daily routine. Once you have made exercise part of your daily habits then you will realize that you cannot outwork a bad diet. Then you can begin to eat to fuel your workouts.
Food often has emotional attachment to it but so does exercise (did you ever have to run a lap or do pushups for messing up in a sports practice?) If you find it easier to confront your demons by confronting your food issues then you can start there. I find it easier to handle my issues with food after I have an exercise routine in place. Exercise can help with depression, a major cause of overeating or stress eating.
Be SMART in choosing your behavior. Be SMART in choosing how you live your life fully. Be aware that you are in charge of your life. Your health is in your own hands, not the hands of your doctor or insurance company. When you become empowered about your health, wellness and realize the future of your body is in your hands then you can begin to take more of a commanding role in how your physical life will go from here. Choose longevity and how well you can move. Seek health from this day forward and you will be rewarded with clearer thoughts and a sense that you are making the decision to live a longer and fuller life.
Reward yourself with play and movement, not a pizza or cake. The longer you leave the unhealthy foods off of your plate the less you will crave them.
Now go be healthier.
Tri Coach Andy