1/ Drink plenty of water
I can’t emphasis this enough. It’s great for your brain, your skin, your digestive system and circulatory system, and it aids in weight loss and cellulite reduction. If you feel fatigued during the day, it can be because you are dehydrated. If you feel hungry, it can be because you are dehydrated. Water is so important to our bodies yet it’s the one thing that is often overlooked. To get the correct level of water intake (in pints), multiple your weight in pounds by 0.0624.
Oh and if your lips are dry and cracked, you are passed general dehydration which can lead to health problems, so get drinking water ASAP!
2/ Cut back on fizzy drinks
Everyone has done it; reached for that can of coke or redbull because “you need the sugar” or because you’re thirsty. I can’t begin to tell you why these kinds of drinks are bad for you, least of which they do the opposite to what is wanted where they dehydrate you whilst providing you with the biggest ever sugar rush damaging your body and creating additional fat.
If I got paid for the amount of times I’ve heard people say they don’t have time to exercise, yet they can tell me what’s been happening on the TV, I’d be a millionaire. Exercise does not mean going to the gym and working out for hours. Exercise means moving your body. So instead of watching the news, the soaps or the latest reality show, go for a walk, a jog or a bike ride. Play games in the garden with the children. Dance along to a fitness DVD. Just do something away from that couch!
4/ Get organised
I appreciate everyone has busy lives these days. We’re constantly on the move, socialising or working. To accommodate being so busy, we do forget about ourselves. So start getting yourself organised. Plan what you are going to have as meals for the week ahead. If you can’t go to the shops, order online and have things delivered; it’s not expensive and time slots vary so it can accommodate your. When you plan, you can choose healthy meals.
5/ Get snacking
If you are on the go all the time, then snacks are even more important. Be prepared by buying bags of veg, mixed nuts (none salted or flavoured) and fresh and dried fruit. Having healthy snacks available will help you avoid buying convenience foods.
I get it. We all work hard and long hours. We have loads to do and not enough time in the day. That is why we don’t get at least 7 hours sleep. Really? Does this excuse justify not looking after yourself? Sleep is so important to us that we do need at least 7 hours of good sleep every night. During our sleep, we repair both physically and psychologically which enables our brain and body to manage the next day full on. Sleeping well even lets us burn fat!! If we don’t get at least 7 hours of sleep every night of the week, we open ourselves to illnesses including a higher risk of heart problems and diabetes. We’re even at higher risk of psychological problems such as panic attacks or nervous breakdowns.
7/ Get the party started
Human beings are social mammals. We love being in the company of others and its actually a benefit to our health. So make the most of it. Organise evenings with friends but with one difference. You all have to bring something healthy towards the meal. So as an example, choose a theme for the evening, say Mexican. Split the group say into 3’s: one group brings the starter, another group brings the main meal, the other a dessert. All courses must be healthy and homemade, and a healthy portion size!!. Anyone caught cheating does the washing up!
8/ Never, ever skip meals
This is a massive NO NO. I don’t care if you’re not feeling hungry you must eat something every 4 hours! If you don’t, your body goes into starvation mode, holds on to fat and even when you do eat your body is reluctant to lose this additional fat in case starvation happens again. So never, ever skip a meal!
9/ Start your day with protein
Our stomachs are designed to look out for protein first thing in the morning. This is the one food group which will help us feel full, curb cravings by balancing our blood sugar levels and gives us energy to get on with the day. We are not designed to eat cereals (which are high in sugar) or even drink cow’s milk, specifically semi and skimmed milk both of which is highly processed. So start your day with something great like eggs!
10/ Stop with the guilt trip!
I love the 80/20 rule: 80% of the time you eat healthy and drink lots of water, 20% of the time you have a treat such as dinner out, an ice cream with the kids, etc. Being good all the time can have a negative impact on your life so give yourself room to breathe. Even if you go 90/10 it is still allowing a healthy lifestyle, not a restrictive diet. Staying with this attitude means you will see results.
By Debora Villiers of Broadart Fitness