Let’s be honest. 2020 has definitely NOT been the best year in terms of things we can’t control. I personally started the year with some pretty lofty health and fitness goals that went south pretty quickly when I couldn’t find staple foods at the grocery store, my half-marathon got postponed, and all the local gyms shut down.
When shelter-in place restrictions started in TN, I used it as an excuse to stop working out, and eat (or drink) whatever I want. It was an unhealthy cycle, but I FINALLY decided to do something about it. That looks a little different for everyone- but I’m going to share three things that have helped me get back on track.
1. Drink ALL the water.
This is one of the easiest things you can do to take care of your body. I aim for 2 Liters of water every single day. It seems like a lot when you look at a big ‘ole jug of water at the beginning of the day, but it’s doable and VERY worth it. I’m a visual person, so I prefer to fill up one big bottle so I can keep an eye on my progress throughout the day.
Making sure you stay hydrated can also reduce the temptation to reach for sugary, high-calorie beverages. If you drink three cokes a day, something as small as swapping out a single coke could save you 138 calories, and 33 grams of sugar!
2. Make a food “plan”.
This does NOT have to mean a fully restrictive diet, tracking macros, or jumping into an elimination diet (keto, paleo, etc). If you’ve been fully “off the rails” for a while, it may actually be easier to start simple. Maybe that means you change one meal a day- swapping a cheeseburger for a salad, or adding in an extra serving of green veggies instead of chips. In my personal opinion, the best thing you can do for yourself is to have a plan. If you start the week knowing what you’re going to cook and eat, it will streamline your grocery list, cutting down the trips to the grocery store. If you REALLY want your best chance for success, I highly recommend preparing a couple of easy meals (or proteins) at the beginning of the week. It will help keep you on track when the unexpected happens! My go-to is meal prepping two types of proteins and two types of veggies early in the week. Then I can take them to work with me so I’m not tempted by take-out when I get hungry. The bonus is that prepping ahead of time saves you time and money as well!
3. Make time to move your body every day.
All good habits start somewhere! If you’ve never worked out a day in your life, deciding to join a new gym and start working out more often is a BIG change. Even if you are a seasoned pro, picking up a new workout routine can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be! If you’re local to the Nashville area, I’ve heard great things about CrossFit Solid Orange Nashville. They pride themselves on providing an inclusive, fun, and engaging workouts taught by licensed coaches that can scale workouts for any fitness level. You can try out your first class, and get a personal consult for free. Check out the CrossFit Solid Orange website to sign up for a class or get a Nashville CrossFit gym membership
I’m a big fan of strength training, because it gives you the most “bang for your buck” in terms of the amount of time you put in, compared to the results you get. Lifting weights allows you to build more lean muscle, and when you build lean muscle, you increase your resting metabolic rate- so you just naturally burn more calories! Workouts like CrossFit combine strength training with cardio, so you get the best of both worlds: strength training to help you build that muscle, and cardio that gets your heart rate up so you burn quite a few calories during the workout. In the long-term, adding muscle mass also helps strengthen your bones, putting you at less risk of fractures or osteoporosis.
Do you have any strategies to keep you on track with your fitness goals?
Until next time,
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