Lifelong Health: Get Your Groove On

A healthy lifestyle and successful weight management may require you to find your “groove.”  Your body appreciates routine when it comes to managing your metabolism, but your muscles, mouth and mind like to keep things interesting.

Some rules for finding your groove:

  • Diet. When it comes to planning your diet, choose a variety of foods to ensure you get all the nutrients you need, but eat around the same times each day and appropriate portions – not too much and not too little.
  • Fitness. You should definitely have a fitness routine – meaning you are consistent, but don’t get stuck doing the same exercises and activities month after month, year after year. Add new exercises to your routine and shake things up, so your body never knows what’s next – these “surprises” will really drive results.
  • Sleep. This can be tough to manage, but going to bed at the same time each night and waking up at the same time each morning can work wonders for you, but that type of regimen is difficult for the average person. Not to mention that for ideal sleep, you should start winding down for bed, two hours before you want to be asleep. It’s a good goal to aim for though!

Being “stuck in a rut” – of any kind- can be detrimental to your success.

Some people get stuck making excuses.

Some people get stuck giving up.

Some people get stuck doing the same thing over and over and over….

And some people find their groove and find success…. even if there are bumps along the way.

The “bumps” can be anything that might steer you off course – moving, job changes, vacations, a new baby, but what matters is that you find your groove again.

Do you want to “get your groove on”?

  • Experiment. Finding a working health routine takes time. Be patient and try new things: foods, exercises, routes and most importantly – schedules (if working out in the morning doesn’t work, try the evening. If a one hour workout doesn’t work, try two thirty-minute workouts. If eating breakfast at home is impossible, find a to-go meal. Try. Try. And try again…if you never give up, success will find you.
  • Plan. One of the best bits of advice I ever got – write it down (that can apply to almost anything.) If you want to stick to something, write it down and then check it off when you complete each task.  Ever notice those people that walk into the gym and spend more time wandering around deciding what to do rather than working out? (That’s because they don’t have a plan – ever.) The same is true for food – make a plan and you are less likely to be tempted to stray off course (especially if you prepare that meal in advance and are already invested.)
  •  Commit. There is this common misconception that if you reach the finish line, that’s it, you’re done. I’ve got news for you – good health takes work – for the rest of your life! But trust me, it is better than the alternative. There is no quick-fix, there is no plan that actually ends – it is infinite, but it is totally worth it. And more “best” advice (this one, I thank my Mom for because it is the reason I believe so firmly in a healthy lifestyle): “Make exercise a habit now and it will always be part of your life.”  She’s right. Habits are hard to break – choose good ones and they will stay with you forever.
  • Baby steps. Success won’t happen overnight, but you can start edging your way there. Choose one habit, maybe three to change or add and master it. Then move on to add another. Get rid of bad habits and replace them with good habits – but not all at once – that’s a recipe for failure. For example, if you smoke, for the next 4 weeks, plan to stop smoking (rid of the bad habit) and drink more water (add a good habit.) In 4 weeks, you might still be struggling with quitting smoking, but you now drink lots of water. Plan to add more fruits and vegetables to your diet (add a good habit) over the next 4 weeks and continue not smoking (kick that bad habit). After 4 more weeks, start adding a walk or jog to your day on three days each week or so (add a good habit) and stop excessive TV time on the couch (rid of a bad habit).

Don’t get stuck. No matter how old you are, how many “bad” habits you have or how many pounds you want to lose – success is waiting for you. It doesn’t come easy, but it tastes so sweet.

Get your groove on! It takes time to find it – so don’t wait.

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One comment

  1. […] The lack of adherence can be attributed to multiple factors. Many times the goals set are large and too lofty to achieve without a clear plan to the finish line. Other times, the New Year merely marks a fresh start or new beginning. As a nutritional counselor, I often see clients who come in on Friday with a plan to get started on Monday. The trouble with this mindset is the belief that the beginning and the end are finite. When it comes to weight loss and ultimately weight management, it is a life long process. Whether you start on January 1st or an arbitrary Monday, you will have to eat right, exercise regularly, manage stress, get plenty of sleep and, in general, care for your health,  to maintain your goal. […]

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