If you read my post New year new me? you will know that I have been working on what I am eating and exercising 4-5 times a week to try and improve my health and well being.
As this has been such a big part of my life I thought I would talk you guys through what things have really helped me stay on track from recipes to apps as well as some tips on how to keep yourself motivated on days that you really can’t be bothered and how to see the long term goal rather than over night changes! 🙂
~ Food ~
Let’s start with the most important thing in my life. Food. When I started this process my friend told me to set a calorie goal that was realistic but would also help me lose some weight, we set the goal of 1800 calories for January and agreed to drop this amount by 100 calories every month until I was on around 1400-1500 calories.
This process is better and helps you mentally as you know that the calories will reduce gradually but you also know that dropping 100 calories isn’t the worst thing in the world as it is simply a chocolate bar or a bag of crisps.
Dropping calories gradually is also better for your body as it won’t be so much of a shock to the system and it will be a hell of a lot easier to stick to your calories rather than craving everything you see by setting unrealistic goals!
I have been using some specific cookbooks throughout the past half a year and more so over the past couple of months.
One thing I do need to get better at is actual meal planning for a week, however, I have been sticking to my calories if not being under my calories most days so organisation can come in time I am sure.
Here are the cookbooks I have been using pretty much daily to create my meals to make sure I am within my calories and eating food that will fuel my body for longer.
~ Exercise ~
Adding more exercise to my day-to-day routine wasn’t as challenging as I originally thought. This has been helped by my friends and boyfriend being understanding of the fact that I need to stay on track and need to be focused with it.
I have found that planning my week makes things a lot easier, for instance, if I know I will be away for the weekend I will push to workout everyday if not 4 days after work to make sure I am sticking to my goals for the week.
Motivation is sometimes a tricky one when it comes to working out after a long day at work, however, I have found talking to friends who are into fitness or are on the same sort of changes to lifestyle as you really helps to motivate me. If someone I know is going to the gym or going to a class like Zumba I will force myself to workout so that I can feel accomplished too!
Here are the at home DVDs I have been using:
~ Motivation ~
Motivation goes hand in hand with the lifestyle changes. If you’re not motivated you wont stick to something, and that is the same with anything. If you are starting something to improve things in the long run you need to be motivated so you can keep up with the calorie counting and exercise and stay positive about it all.
Motivation for me comes from setting goals. I want to be more confident in my own skin, like anyone does, and I have a holiday coming up in the summer so I want to feel more confident and happy by then. After that, my goal is to stay healthy and happy in the long run.
Goals are an important thing to keep you on track and that’s why I have some short term goals, like the holiday, and a longer term goal of keeping my health and well being at a good level.
People seeing changes in you or are complimenting that you look healthier or look slimmer is a huge motivator to keep going so you can start seeing the changes yourself.
I have a couple of friends who are gym junkies and some who are working towards the same sort of goals as me to improve their health and well being and this balance is really helpful to keep my motivation at its peak.
Talking to people and discussing things that you’re struggling with or having a good positive chat about everything can do wonders for your self esteem and your mindset so that you can keep going and working towards your goals!
~ Changing Your Mindset ~
Your mindset changes day-to-day, this is a given, you are human. Some days you cannot be bothered and just want to eat a full chocolate orange whilst watching The Vampire Diaries and drinking wine. That is life, however, learning how to change that mindset is pretty essential to make sure you don’t fall off the wagon for too long!
One of my friends is helping me throughout this process by keeping me on track and she suggested taking progress pictures. This, weirdly, does kinda help. I haven’t seen any MAJOR changes in the photos but I can see some changes so this does help me stay away from the chocolate orange, get changed and sweat in my living room! Haha!
I have also found praising myself for small victories a major helper to keeping my mindset positive towards it all. Little things like having more bounce in my step as I have more energy generally from exercising more, my underwear fitting better or even fitting into jeans that I haven’t been able to wear since last summer. These are all small victories that keep me on track and keep me moving forward and sticking to my calories and exercise!
~ Comfort Zones ~
When it comes to losing weight and watching what you’re eating you need to do it for you and your well being, not for anyone else’s. This is about you feeling better within yourself and doing things that you feel comfortable with.
Since the start of this process a few people have told me to join a gym or to buy a set of scales to track my numbers. I have major anxiety about gyms and I am working towards joining one by the end of March, however, home workouts work perfectly for me right now and I am sticking to them for now!
Scales are never going to be part of my life. I hate the idea of being fixated on numbers and I have seen so many people getting obsessed with how the numbers go up and down, this is not my aim. This whole process is for me, not for numbers. So progress pictures for me are perfect as I can see physical changes without getting weighed down, excuse the pun, by numbers telling me to eat less and move more.
This is all about you, not everyone else, so don’t feel pressured to follow the crowds and do something you’re not comfortable with! Do what you want and what you know you can stick to 🙂
So there we go, pals! Some things that have been keeping me on track and some things that have been helping me to keep on track and stick to my goals! I hope this helps you or potentially gives you that tiny boost to maybe push for something you want too!