With spring quickly approaching I am starting to hear some of my least favorite terms pop up such as “bikini body” and “beach ready.” People are going to see us prancing around half naked soon so better start watching what we eat!
Our health is not temporary, but sometimes our actions toward it are.
What sense does that make? Yet we are constantly focusing on quick fixes that will make us feel good for a tiny bit before heading back to our normal (and less healthy) way of life. Take these examples, for instance:
– 21 day cleanses: Our nutrition + exercise are on point during this, we feel and look great. But come day 22 you could probably be found at the local pizzeria and maybe be seen with a pint of ice cream afterward. But hey, you cleansed for 21 days so now you can reward your body and binge..yay!
– You’re going on vacation soon: Clearly we need to clean up our eating and hit the gym a bunch so we look better while laying on the beach. I get it, we want to look and feel good especially while wearing less clothing and there’s nothing wrong with that. What I do have a problem with is what happens next:
– You’re on vacation: Which means we get to start drinking at 10am, continue cocktailing for the entire day and eating whatever we want because “we’re on vacation and totally deserve a break.” A BREAK FROM WHAT? Being healthy? Giving a shit about what you put into your body? Shouldn’t this matter all of the time?
– It’s the weekend: Yay! It’s time for takeout, Netflix, sleeping in a little, going out to dinner and ordering whatever you want because it’s Saturday and who cares. Followed by 5 too many drinks and a hangover on Sunday. But no worries..because “tomorrow is Monday and I’ll totally start to be good again.”
Health and fitness do not have to be all or nothing.
There is an in between.
Find it, learn it, live it.
I used to be that Monday clean slate girl. I’d make sure nothing naughty was left in the house Sunday evening and the following morning I’d have a green smoothie with protein for breakfast and all was right in the world again. It’s no way to live. Treating our bodies with respect all year round is the best way to stay consistent and achieve results. Once you’re able to find that balance you will enjoy either a salad with grilled chicken or a hamburger and fries for lunch, no matter what day of the week or time of the year it is.
How can we find that in between ground where we’re mindful of our health but are still able to enjoy food we love? Since it’s Friday, let’s start with 3 simple guidelines for the weekend:
1. Have protein with every meal. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and maybe a snack- you better believe there needs to be protein on your plate.
Why? Protein helps us to feel full longer after a meal so you’re less hungry later. It requires more energy to digest so we burn more calories after eating it. It also helps to manage blood sugar and insulin, and triggers protein synthesis helping us to increase lean mass which burns more calories each day.
Need I say more?
2. Exercise for a minimum of 20 minutes, maximum of 60. Let’s do this twice this weekend (I’m including Friday into the weekend so you’ve got 2/3 days to get this in). The workout you choose to do is up to you, but here are the parameters:
-Choose a form of exercise you enjoy doing.
-The more intense the workout, the shorter the duration. Maybe you’re going to do as many rounds of squats, overhead press, bent-over rows and mountain climbers as possible within 20 minutes. Great, go for it (but remember quality form over quantity of reps). Or perhaps you’d prefer to go for a walk with your dogs or a friend for an hour. Cool. Get moving, get outside and enjoy.
3. Set up a drink maximum. Yes, we’ve got parties to attend and dinner with friends. That doesn’t mean you have to have a bottle of wine to yourself. Before you head out decide how many drinks you’ll indulge in. (I usually recommend a 2 drink max per event for clients, *hint hint*).
Summer is right around the corner but that doesn’t mean the healthiest you has to be too. Start this weekend. Because maybe if you do these 3 things over the next 3 days, you’ll realize they’re not so bad. You’ll incorporate them into Monday, Tuesday, and then why not for the duration of the week, month, and your life (Yes, my hopes are high but not unrealistic).
I want you to see, know and understand you can still have a blast while sticking to a few healthy habits– leading to consistency and an all out better-than-you’ve-ever-been you.
Now go get it. <3