Feeling stuck on your weight loss journey? Discouraged by your lack of gains in your overall fitness and health? By following these tips, you will experience greater vitality and a healthier physique. Take small steps daily to live fit, and watch your overall happiness and pleasure in life increase.
1. Don’t Set Unrealistic Goals
Dream big, but take into consideration what is biologically possible for a human being. Lose five pounds in a week, build bolder biceps in a month. Give yourself a realistic but challenging goal that excites you, so you will keep at it and be fired up to attain it.
Set a big, audacious goal, then break it down into bite-size chunks, put your head down, and pursue it like you mean it…even when you do not feel like it! This is how successful people attain their goals. They push right on through the “I don’t feel like it” and then bask in their success on the other side. You can do that, too. You just have to want it bad enough.
Rule of Thumb: Make a plan that you know you can stick to long-term. Don’t go to extremes like over-exercising or crash dieting. Once you figure out a sustainable, practical plan that works for you, stick to it. No excuses.
“It’s about letting go of negative self-talk and feelings of unworthiness, which no longer serve you, so you can live your life all-out.” – Kate McKay
2. Eat Breakfast
It’s called “breaking a fast” for a reason. Your body has not had nutrition for hours after waking up. Your body is a temple, so be kind to it and refuel. When you wake up, your body craves a healthy protein and a complex carbohydrate to fuel you through your day — not coffee and a doughnut. Start a routine of fueling your body in the a.m. with clean food; it will jump start your day.
Rule of Thumb: No matter how pressed you are for time in the morning, make it a priority to eat a light and healthy breakfast.
3. Do Not Binge on Booze
No, it is not OK to have too many cocktails to count and think your body can adjust to such high levels of alcohol, sugar and calories all in one evening. A lot of people use the excuse, “I only do it on the weekend” or “I just like wine/vodka/beer, what is so bad about that?” Alcohol in excessive amounts wreaks havoc on your fitness and wellness goals. Stick to 1-2 drinks and hydrate with water between each drink to stay properly hydrated. Don’t set yourself back by obliterating your successes with an excess of alcohol. Your body will thank you. Self-respect means honoring the body you have; booze binging simply does not follow that. You deserve better than that.
Rule of Thumb: Avoid alcohol as much as possible. When you must drink, stick to 1-2 alcoholic beverages at the most, and keep drinking water in between.
4. Stay Hydrated
I know, I know — I hear all the time that drinking water is a total pain in the neck, but it is a habit that is a crucial part of your health and wellness goals. Your body tissues love the flush, including your skin. The optimal amount is no less than 50 percent of your body weight in ounces of water. Initially you may feel bloated; however, your body does adjust to the extra fluid. Soon you will notice a healthier glow to your skin, a flatter belly, and even less fatigue, as studies have shown that drinking more water increases energy and alertness. Bottoms up!
Rule of Thumb: Water should be your primary beverage of choice. You can stick to the common “8 by 8” rule: drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day, which is 1.9 liters. If you exercise, you may need an extra 1.5 to 2.5 cups of water, according to Mayo Clinic.
5. Get Enough Sleep
The truth is that when we don’t get enough sleep, we are more likely to lose commitment to our fitness goals, make poor choices with food, drink less water, and have an increased chance of injury. Don’t let that be you! Commit to going to bed close to the same time every night, be sure to get adequate exercise every day (30 minutes daily exercise is recommended), and be careful not to drink alcohol too close to bedtime, which can disturb your sleep. Turn off your phone. Leave it out of your room if you have to in order to ensure a good night’s sleep.
Rule of Thumb: Get enough sleep every night. Sleep deprivation causes overeating, lack of energy and other side effects that deter us from reaching our goals.
Kate McKay is an author, motivational life coach, fitness guru and successful entrepreneur. Her book, “Living Sexy Fit,” inspires others to live a happy, fulfilling life and achieve their goals at any age. McKay is also the founder of the “28-Day Living Fabulously Fit, From the Inside Out with Kate McKay!” program. To learn more about McKay, visit kate-mckay.com.