Everyone tends to feel that January pressure to get back to whatever shape they were in before Christmas came around to tempt us all with endless amounts of chocolates, Christmas dinner, party food and alcohol. I’m no different. I can’t even blame Christmas, since before then I have been lagging behind and failing to keep up to date with maintaining a healthy lifestyle as I have done before. Now I’m not saying I was this incredibly strict, no carbs no calorie junkie. But I liked to keep my meals balanced and try to fit in some exercise each week, even if it was only once or twice. But after having a few (or more) lazy months, I’m really starting to feel the repercussions. So, I need abit of a boost and some motivation to get me started once again. Hopefully, these tips will not only help me but also anyone else who is looking to start a healthy lifestyle.
Follow influential profiles
It’s always good to have someone who motivates you regardless of whether they are online or not. Having someone that has that influence on you can be incredibly helpful when it feels hard or you are struggling to power through to reach your goals. I find that following influential people on social media gives me that added incentive I need to keep my focus and carry on with exercise and healthy eating. Probably my favourite one to follow is @thebodycoach on Instagram as he always posts great recipe videos that I love to try.
Start to exercise
Arguably the hardest part for me is finding the time or motivation to start exercising. The idea of pushing your body can be terrifying when you haven’t done it in a while so it may be easier to ease yourself in slowly. Whether you enjoy gym classes, running, fitness DVDs or even speed walking, start by going once or twice a week for however long you can. As the weeks go by you will find yourself lasting longer, feeling the urge to push yourself and doing more exercise. For me, I find running for 20-30 minutes once or twice a week helps me get back into the rhythm of things.
If you’ve visited my blog before then you probably know by now that I love a good recipe book. Finding new ideas and different foods always gives me the inspiration to try them for myself and experiment a little. So, for Christmas I got another Joe Wicks’ recipe book to add to my collection. These recipes are perfect for meal prepping my lunches for work and meals at home. This means I won’t be spending the little time I have at home after work in the kitchen. Same goes for meal planning for the week ahead, doing it on a Sunday allows me more free time to do whatever else I want to do during the week without the need to prepare for the next day.
Read my post on how I started cooking and why I love it here.
Get a buddy
Mine happens to be my mum, we both really want to resume our healthy eating and get back to feeling our best selves. I find exercise more enjoyable (and bearable) when experienced with someone else. Doing it with another person gives you that extra motivation to reach your goals and means you can support one another through your journeys.
Getting rid of temptation
I really need to listen to this tip in particular. Having chocolate and sweets from the holidays does nothing to help you stay on course. It might be hard, but hiding or giving away leftover Christmas chocolate is a definite way to rid yourself of any temptation. My dad has his own stash that he keeps in the house so I’ll begrudgingly hand them over to him so they won’t be staring at me in my room anymore. It’s always a sad thing when chocolate goes to waste but it’ll be better in the long run! (Or so I keep telling myself).
New gym clothes
It’s always a nice feeling when you get some new clothes, you feel confident and want to wear them right away. It’s the same way with gym wear, I find that when I buy new clothes I immediately want to wear them and get going. Plus wearing them for any other reason then exercising is just another form of guilt that motivates me to utilise them for their proper use.
I have a Fitbit that I haven’t worn since August 2018 when I was on holiday so I definitely need to start wearing this again. The app especially acts as extra motivation as it keeps track of your steps, calories burned and consumed, heartbeat, sleep pattern and active minutes. I would really enjoy recording my calorie intake for the day and what I was eating each week. Keeping a daily calorie goal helped me to eat enough during the day but not too much that I would be gorging myself. The handy thing about this app is that it sends you weekly update emails for the previous week, so you always know whether or not you are on track.
Now, I’m not writing this post because I want to become a skinny minnie, to push dieting onto anyone or because I’m completely blocking any form of junk food from my life (it’s just not possible and anyway, why would I?). But I found that I enjoyed getting fitter and eating healthily when I did it the last couple of years so I’m in desperate need of motivation to begin again. And so I hope that anyone who is looking to get healthy after a Christmas slump finds this post helpful and motivating in any way.
If anyone has any tips, advice or motivational support to give I’d love to hear it. I need all the help I can get!
Read my post on my journey to getting active to see how I first started a healthier lifestyle.