Several of my friends/co-workers/family will ask, ‘what’s your secret?’ and I smile and ramble off the following. Since I consider you my friends, I am giving you my top secret (just kidding) personal information to staying healthy and 'fit’ (and staying sane - that’s important right?)!
1. Eat clean, don’t diet.
Diets are temporary, horrible and do not work. The only way to 'get in shape’ is to cut your calories and get moving. It’s that easy. Therefore, choose fruits and veggies and lean meats. At a restaurant? Skip the bread, order from the 'under such and such calories’, do not order the creme sauce plate - make good decisions. YOU are paying the restaurant. I do not feel bad for changing their fully fat menu item to something like 'scrambled egg whites, sugar free syrup, and turkey sausage’ or 'chicken not slathered in butter or creme, veggie of the day, and sub fruit for bread’. I could tell you to stop eating out at restaurants but I eat out at least once a week (if we are being honest, here). I make good decisions and know my deficits. This is a fantastic breakdown of ’Nutrition for Newbies’.
2. Never. Skip. Breakfast.
I eat breakfast every morning and it is my favorite. 'No, that nutrigrain bar does not count’. My daily breakfast is: scrambled egg whites or turkey sausage and plan oats with peanut butter (occasionally). It honestly depends on the rest of your day and your goals.
3. Eat often.
I have a co-worker that calls me 'the tank'
because I always seem to be eating. I strive to eat at least 5-6 times a day (if I put it simply) which means 3 'normal’ meals and snacks in between. I just ate three hard boiled eggs (sans 2 of the yellows). 'Eat often’ does not mean eat Cheetos, cookies (sigh), and lots of bread - see step 1.
4. Get moving.
I have a desk job and it is very hard for me to sit in a chair and type at a computer for about 8 hours. My legs literally cramp and need to move. Ask them? They’ll tell you. Therefore, I try to move around at work (including running or squatting up the steps). I workout at least 6 days a week (and this is usually in the morning before my daughter is awake and lasts anywhere from 30-60 minutes). I used to run in 5K’s that my work sponsored for fun (and the t-shirt and the bib). I go to the park, walk around the mall, play with my daughter, and take the stairs not that damn escalator/elevator. Which leads me to…
5. Strength train.
This means you too women - especially you. Read this and discover great information. You will not bulk up, you will tone and burn calories.
6. Stick to a schedule.
This is what works for me (especially being a working mother) - if being a bouncy ball off random walls works for you then do what you gotta’ do! However, my day looks like this: wake up and do workout, shower, make breakfast for the family and I, clean/hair/makeup/playtime, get ready for work, go to work. PS: I do not like to shower unless I 'earned it’. Which means - I have to be sweaty from a workout.
7. Enjoy your exercise/workout/food.
If you don’t like it - you won’t do it, right? Newsflash: eating 'clean’/healthy food is actually very yummy and your body will feel amazing (aka: you won’t feel like a lethargic rock). Years ago, I did Beachbody DVD (at home) programs like INSANITY (fav), Asylum 1 & 2, Les Mills Pump, and Les Mills COMBAT. Now, I hit the gym or workout at home.
8. Be held accountable.
I hold myself accountable in 3 major ways - my heart rate monitor, my calendars, and writing in here to you. I like seeing how many calories I burnt. If you need a giant calendar on the wall with your workout schedule and need to cross off the ones you have finished (I have done this), then do it. If you need a 'workout buddy’, then find one. Our generation is online - use the tools. There are apps, websites, and information out the wazoo. When I used to use Garmin devices:
9. Stay away from alcohol and sugary drinks (including soda).
This means do not put yourself in the situation to have to force yourself to sadly say no AND as well as do.not.drink.it. If it’s not there, you won’t want it, right? Clean your fridge out. I usually do not drink alcohol. I may have a glass of wine or a 'pineapple and rum’ once every few months. I do not drink soda. I am working on drinking more water (since your body literally fuels off of it) but oftentimes choose Vitamin Water Zero or tea too. STAY WITH ME HERE. If you need to have booze in your life, read this. I usually give people this face:
10. Make all of this a way of life.
I do not see 'working out’ or 'exercising’ as an option. I have a schedule and I stick to it. If, for some reason I could not get it done in the morning, I will do it in the evening. Just like eating clean and not skipping meals, I complete my workout for the day. Just like you have to go to work, you have to go to workout. If you are full of excuses like 'I do not have time’ - you’re full of excuses. If you have time to watch that TV show/sit on the couch/stare at the wall for 30 minutes - then you have time to get your fitness on. If you have time to go through a drive thru and shove that hamburger in your mouth, you have time to make yourself a healthy lunch. You can do sit-ups all day long, but if you do not clean up your diet you will get nowhere.
There you have it. These are were my secrets. Do you want a healthy/fit/and sane life? Get on it. :) There are only 10.