Monday, May 12, 2014

How to Get Healthy (In 5 Not-So-Easy Steps)

Speaking of posts with lists...

Every so often I come to a realization that I'm unhealthy. I do something about it (exercise and eat less) for about a month...

...until this thing tells me it's not having enough of an effect and I give in to my craving of the day.

With that in mind, I have come up with a short list to help us get healthy.

1.) Join a gym - with a friend. "Do you want to go to the gym today?" can be a big motivator on the days when you really don't want to.

(If there are no friends in your area, join it anyway. Paying the monthly fee is a pretty good motivator, too.)

2.) Create an account on SparkPeople (or any calorie-counting site). Input every food and drink you have. Repeat daily.

3.) Invest in a SparkPeople tracker (other trackers work, too, but for the features it has this is the best value I know of). This counts your steps and how often you're active (moving for 10+ minutes) throughout the day. It gives you an initial goal of 6,000 steps (~3 miles), but you can tweak that to your own goals. I was surprised at how little I moved throughout the day, and have made a conscious effort to walk more - even on "non-exercise" days.

This helps me get my steps in when I'm working at my desk.

4.) Fill your fridge with fruits, veggies, and lean meats (turkey and chicken are filled with protein and few calories). If most of what you see when you open the door is healthy, you're more likely to reach for it. (That's my theory, anyway.)

But don't completely cut out those unhealthy foods you love! I have something yummy and unhealthy just about every day...sometimes multiple unhealthy foods in a day. As long as it's a small portion, I'm within my calorie range, and I've had enough protein and fruits/veggies, why not? (It also saves me from craving-binges.)

5.) Find something fun that still gets you to move. For me, that's swimming, biking, and (a recent discovery) yoga. I also love to dance.

I started getting serious in March this year, and I have done each of these steps. My results on the scale haven't been great. I keep trying to hide the dumb machine and not think about it, but there isn't a hiding place in my room I don't already know about. (I suppose it would help if I asked someone else to hide the thing.)

But it's not about the scale right now. I can tell I've gotten stronger. My endurance is up. My pants are looser. Everything but the scale says this is working. That thilly scale doesn't know what it's talking about.

Do I want to go to the gym today? Not particularly - but I will. My friend is meeting me there.


  1. These are all very good reminders! I'm still trying to achieve a healthy lifestyle so thanks for the encouragement!

    Also, I just wanted to let you know I nominated you for the Leibster Award over at my blog,!

    1. Glad it was helpful! It's a slow journey, but it'll be worth it. (Right?) :)

      Thank you! That'll be fun to participate in.


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