You no longer have to imagine the difference it will make when you create a new lifestyle. If you think a new lifestyle is for you visit this page on a regular basis. Our very own lifestyle and weight management specialist; Cheryl Hanniman, will be posting dietary, nutritional and exercise tips designed to make your lifestyle transition much easier.
Commit to Get Fit …Tip # 1- Water and Weight Loss
You’ll hear many professionals in lifestyle and weight refer to water as a major contributor to weight loss. This is very true as it can increase your metabolism by up to 30%, which helps you burn off more calories, especially when you drink about 15oz. just before your meal. This helps you consume less calories at mealtime.
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Commit to Get Fit …Tip # 2- Healthy Eating
Now that we’ve purged our cupboards let’s remember, that while trying out new foods, we still want to follow our plan.
Healthy eating is all about balance. We want to incorporate all the food groups in our daily choices. This is important to ensure we are consuming all the essential nutrients our body requires.
At this point it is a good idea to keep track of what and when we eat. Keep some sort of Food Journal! It helps us to evaluate whether we are hitting the mark with portion sizes, food choices and eating patterns. This is a VERY IMPORTANT STEP when making changes to our daily habits.
Are we eating enough? Are we skipping meals? Are we eating large meals late?
Are we consuming unnecessary snacks? Do we eat when working? Are we overindulging? Are we selecting foods from all the categories in the plan? Any pattern established can be good or bad.
If we are making lifestyle changes it is important to understand what we are doing right and what needs to change. Remember in order to see change we need to change!
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Commit to Get Fit …Tip # 3- Lifestyle Change
A lifestyle change is not an easy process. Take your time. Some changes may require baby steps, others may be obtained without too much hardship.
There are 5 stages of Change
Pre-contemplation, Contemplation, Preparation, Action and Maintenance.
Try to visualize the stages as a staircase. There is only one way to get to the next step and that is through EFFORT? Because stairs go both ways, at times we will take a step back. Be okay with this. Life is a cha-cha.
As we have already made the commitment to change hopefully we are in the Action stage. Just in case, let’s take a quick look at what the first three stages mean.
- Pre-contemplation: not thinking seriously about change. Don’t view their habits as problematic
- Contemplation: consider the possibility of change
- Preparation: made previous attempts to change. Are usually taking small steps towards changing their behavior. Believe change is necessary.
- Which brings us to Action: making great steps towards significant change. May try several techniques. Greatest risk of relapse!
- Maintenance: is the formation of really good habits. This stage is hopefully our goal at the end of the journey.
Commit to Get Fit …Tip # 4- Goal Setting
One of the steps to setting and keeping habits is to set SMART goals.
Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time limited
Changes are hard to make because we love our old habits. We are dedicated to them. Our daily activities, our social life, our way of thinking is all part of these developed habits.
We need to be very specific about the change we want to make. Every change we make requires us to lose something in the process. If our goal is to go to the gym three days a week at 4:30 pm we need to acknowledge what we were previously doing at that time of day. Were we cooking, shopping, having coffee or any other activity that was fairly habitual. We need to first figure out how to make that change before we can proceed with our new goal.
Our SMART goal needs to read: I will go to the gym Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 4:30p.m.
I will buy a 3 month membership and commit to this time frame
I will make sure I have leftovers from the previous night so there is no need to cook.
This is something I want to do and not just something I feel I should do
A vague goal might read:
I will start to exercise
I will pay as I go just in case I don’t make it as often as I want to
I will go after work if I’m not too tired
My mom says I should do this to lose weight
Remember a Lifestyle change requires specific goals in order to successfully change.
Commit to Get Fit...Tip # 5- Success
Celebrate your success along the way. This motivation is a necessary step towards meeting your goals.
You need to have long term goals, short term goals and some sort of reward system.
Long term is the big picture (usually the end result) . I am going to lose 50 pounds in one year. I will achieve this by changing my eating habits and exercising. I want to do this for my health. Once done I am going to Scotland for a walking holiday.
Short term are smaller goals/steps within the framework of the long term goal. These are your baby steps!
In the first week I will: lose 1 pound, I will eat vegetables at every meal, I will allow myself one piece of dark chocolate if I am successful
In the second week I will: lose 1 pound, I will exercise Monday, Wednesday, Friday at the 6:30am. I will buy that book I’ve been wanting if I am successful.
….. continue week to week goals
In three months: I will have lost 12 pounds, I will be eating 5 to 6 servings of vegetables. I will have reduced my simple carbs to one serving per day. I will be eating 1 protein serving at every meal. I will be exercising 3 times per week at 6:30am during the work week. I will do cardio for 1 hour on the weekend.
I will buy a new dress for that wedding I am invited to if I am successful.
…..continue week to week goals
In 6 months:…….etc.
By now habits are forming but be mindful of relapses.
Certified Lifestyle & Weight Management Specialist