As creatures of habit we tend to fall victim to “routines” or “habits”. Some can be good, such as exercising, walking as much as you can and eating a well balanced healthy diet. However, the bad habits can include what we like to call “vacation mode” Ask any professional in the health and wellness industry and they will not deny the fact that in the months of June, July and August, individuals tend to go into a comfortable state and enjoy the summer months that we so rarely get. The patios open up, people flock to the refreshing craft beer, wine, martinis and delicious fatty foods that these bars and restaurants have to offer.
This behavior goes on for months and the good habits die hard with the new bad habits taking over. Come September the kids go back to school, summer dies down and you realize you’ve gained some unwanted weight. Don’t panic. There’s hope. You just have to get out of that vacation mode and back into your healthy routine. Below are 5 things you can start to get out of the funk and back into an energizing, feel good and healthy routine.
1) Start Eating Healthier
The first step in living a healthy lifestyle is your eating habits. The easiest place to start is minimizing or eliminating refined sugars and fats. You can start with small simple steps. Eliminating sugary drinks and fried foods. Try baking, grilling or roasting your foods instead of frying. Eliminate sugary or creamy sauces. Rather than a creamy dressing opt for a vinaigrette on your salads. Oh……and definitely limit your alcohol intake consumption to once a week or not at all.
2) Get Active
Getting active doesn’t necessarily mean joining a gym. You can be active by simply adding a 5km walk after dinner. You can start your morning with a in home routine like squats, push-ups, jumping jacks and planks. Doing some exercise first thing in the morning will you get your metabolic rate up, get you energized and feeling good for the long day ahead.
3) Engage in Group Exercises
Group exercise classes are a great way to get active and healthy. In a group setting you’re more likely to work harder and not slack on your workouts. Trying a class like Boxing or Kickboxing is a great way to engage in high intensity exercises with other individuals for more motivation. Not to mention punching and kicking things is a great stress reliever.
This one is one of the most important things you can do. With the demanding lifestyle we have it’s hard to find enough hours in a day to get everything done. Most people will get less sleep to try and fit everything into one day. You might get things done but what actually ends up happening is our cortisol levels rise to combat the extra stress and lack of rest. With cortisol levels up, you will start to gain weight and experience the negative side effects of high cortisol levels. The human body is a complex machine that never stops working. Rest is essential for our bodies to recover and heal.
5) Cook Your Own Meals
Last on the list is to cook your own meals. When you cook your own meals you know exactly what is being put into your food. Many people complain how long it takes to cook for a family but in the end when you order take-out, by the time it takes to get delivered or picked up, you could have cooked your own food and it probably would taste much better as well. There is also a lot of hidden sugars, fats and chemicals that are being prepared in foods outside of the home.