A lot has happened in the last year and so many of us have experienced unforeseen changes that have affected us in many ways. For some, it may be the change in your daily routine, diet, exercise, or morale. You may be asking yourself: how do I get my mojo back? Where do I start?
We are halfway through this year and it can be easy to become discouraged if you have not stayed the course regarding resolutions and goal setting. Below are a few tips to help you get yourself back in the game. It is not too late to get back on track and achieve some of your 2021 goals!
Shift Your Mindset To Having Grace
This may go against the grain, but it is okay if you stray off course. Just don’t stay there! Give yourself some grace. Remember, your weight loss journey is not a diet, it is a lifestyle change. That means you will have some good days and you will have some bad days, but they can all balance out and work in your favor if you simply stay in the race. Don’t beat yourself up or feel bad about making a bad food choice occasionally. If you keep moving forward, you will have an opportunity to make a better one the next time. With that in mind, it is important not to deprive yourself, which is why the 80/20 rule is so user friendly.
Use The 80/20 Rule As A Tactic, Not An Excuse
The 80/20 Rule allows you to incorporate a little indulgence along the way, while also helping to keep things in perspective and encourage consistency. It entails focusing on eating nutrient-dense foods like whole grains, lean protein, healthy fat and fruits and vegetables 80 percent of time, while 20 percent of time you can include foods higher in caloric intake that may be less nutrient-dense (in moderation). You can think of it as a cheat meal/day. So, if you want to eat the cake- EAT the CAKE! But instead of indulging in the whole slice, try eating half a slice. Following the 80/20 rule helps to reinforce a healthy balanced diet as well as practice positive dietary behavior patterns. Because it incorporates “cheat days/meals”, it helps to curtail binging on unhealthy foods as well as the feeling of depriving yourself of foods you enjoy.
Develop Routines and Checklists To Help You Stay On Track
With more people working from home, it can be hard to create or maintain a daily routine. Most of us have become a little more sedentary after being in the house for almost a year.
How do we get out of the rut of laying on the couch and binging our favorite shows? Try writing a schedule or checklist to help you stay accountable. Ask a friend or co-worker to be your healthy lifestyle accountability partner. And as you consider things you could add to your checklist, remember two very important ones: hydration and exercise.
Stay Hydrated For Multiple Benefits
Hydration is a great way to support weight loss. Staying hydrated helps with feeling sated. A study by Dr. Brenda Davy demonstrated that drinking two-8-ounce glasses of water prior to a meal helped people lose weight. In the study, there were two groups of people between the ages of 55-75 who ate the same diet, but one group drank water before meals and the other did not. The water drinkers lost about 15.5 pounds compared to the non-water drinkers who lost about 11 pounds. Drinking low calorie drinks and water are great ways to support hydration. Grab a water bottle and try to drink at least half your body weight in ounces. (Ex. 150-pound person would drink 75 ounces of water daily)
Find Your Activity/Exercise
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggest getting at least 2.5 hours of aerobic exercise and 2 hours of weight training weekly. It may sound daunting, but it equates to about 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week. If you find it challenging to exercise, shift your thinking. Think of an activity you enjoy like swimming, hiking, or walking and incorporate it into your weekly routine. If you are looking for alternatives or need quick ways to incorporate exercise at home, try some of the exercises you find here.
How will you shift your thinking? What will you add to your daily routine to help get you back on course to your healthy lifestyle?
Lauren Horton, PhD.
Dr. Lauren Horton is passionate about moving patient care forward through research. As a Division Research Director, she is at the forefront of groundbreaking studies and innovation. Her dedication to advancing knowledge and solving complex problems has led to her pivotal role in shaping the future of patient care in the healthcare industry.
Dr. Horton leverages her deep insights and knack for communicating complex ideas in an accessible way to educate and engage a global audience. In her spare time, she is an avid advocate for health and wellness, dedicated to making a positive impact on the world. She believes that knowledge is a powerful tool for change and strives to empower others with the information and inspiration needed to effect meaningful transformation.
Dr. Horton loves to help improve the quality of life of those around her. She has helped men and women from all over the country discover how small steps each day can lead to huge strides towards living a healthier lifestyle.
Dr. Horton holds a BS in biology from Rust College, a MS in health economics and outcomes research from Xavier University and a PhD in biomedical science from Morehouse School of Medicine and completed her post-doctoral studies at the University of Pennsylvania.