This is the time of year when many of us resolve to lose weight and exercise more. For how many years has this been your resolution? How about rephrasing this pledge to "I will strive to be healthier this year?" The weight loss will be a secondary benefit!
It's about "A lifestyle change ... not a diet!". Trust that your body knows what's good for it and fuel it with the energy it desires to produce fantastic results. Start an exercise regimen by walking outside or on a treadmill for 15-20 minutes with the goal of increasing to 30-60 minutes. Don't psych yourself out by "biting off more than you are ready to chew" (figuratively and literally). 95% of eating healthy and being healthy is motivation and willpower ... most people don't want to admit this. As soon as you are convinced that you have to exercise and you have to make healthy food choices, you are on the path to long-lasting success.
Here are Dietitian In The Kitchen Diane Henderiks' simple, painless steps you can take to get started on this path to lifelong success:
1. Give your refrigerator and pantry an overhaul ... stock up on healthy foods.
2. Leave the junk foods at the grocery store where they are not in easy reach and never go grocery shopping hungry.
3. Learn how to read labels ... an educated consumer is a healthy consumer.
4. Deprivation leads to overindulgence ... treat yourself to small portions of the higher calorie foods on occasion.
5. Learn how to cook with less fat, salt and sugar ... healthy food can be both nutritious and delicious.
6. If you have a setback, keep moving on ... lifestyle changes do not happen overnight.
7. Watch your portions ... calories are still at the core of weight loss and weight gain.
8. Exercise at least 30 minutes (cardiovascular and resistance training) most days of the week.
9. Keep yourself hydrated ... chose water and seltzer over other beverages.
10. Accept the fact that there are no quick fixes ... visualize success and take it one day at a time.
Have a healthy and happy 2009!
Remember "It's all about lifestyle changes, not diets!"