Is 2021 the year you loose weight, build muscle, burn fat, and get the body of your dreams?  Is this the year you take control and establish the health habits you will need to thrive? 

New years resolutions are ripe with people promising to make changes to the way they eat, only to falter after 30 days.  Maybe if they are really pumped up about it, they last 60 days before reverting to old ways!  Well, lets do this differently!  Make sure you also check my fitness blog for some action steps on incorporating more exercise and movement into your life this year.

With the usual renewed sense of optimism, people pick some sort of diet that will be the end of all diets!  It will finally be the diet that will work.  All diets work if you follow their rules, but being healthy in the long run is more than a diet and rules.  It is an act of love and commitment to yourself.  You are committing to act in your best interests, to grow, and be healthy because anything that you want to achieve in life means you must be strong mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually, which requires to you eat good food and exercise regularly.  I like the idea of coming up with a phrase that you can see all the time to remind you of what you value so you can act on it.  You can put this on your phone, in your calendar, on a paper in your house, on your desktop!  Play around with different phrases.  I make good decisions everyday.  I commit to being my best self.  It feels great to make healthy choices.  Making healthy choices now is hard, but the more I practice the better I get. 

Another way to motivate yourself to stay on track is to tell a friend, or family member your goal and ask them to help you be accountable!  You two can create a special system that will help you be accountable and keep taking small steps. 

So what actually do you do?  Remember the Slight Edge?  I wrote a post about it on my mindset blog.  Make sure you read it!  Every day take a small step to making better food choices.  What is one small thing you can do to make healthier choices everyday?  Keep asking yourself this question.  Practice makes perfect.

Ok, but what should you actually do?  Drink more water.  I know…anti-climatic, right?  Drink less soda, juice, and alcohol.  Avoid sports drinks.  Limit and eliminate liquid calories!  The sugar, carbonation, artificial colors, and flavors are not necessary.  Drink water, coffee, tea, herbal teas, and opt for more natural drinks.  I would also avoid sugar substitutes!  My exceptions to this would be monk fruit and stevia! 

Other things to cut out would be dessert!  Candy, cookies, ice cream, and all the deliciousness you love needs to be cut down drastically.  Are you goals worth it?  This might be really hard for you, but you will be stronger in the long run by cutting back on your indulgences.  If there was one sweet treat or dessert you could not live without, what would it be?  Well, still have it!  Indulge, but not everyday!  Earn it!  Use it as a reward.  Make a goal such as waiting 3 days before having it.  Next time, increase your goal to 4 or 5 days, then 6 or 7, and keep increasing your goal each time. 

Prioritize protein!  Protein helps you feel satiated.  The more satiated you feel, the less hungry you will be for bad food.  Try to shoot for at least 25 grams of protein with each meal.  I am not an expert on the vegan and vegetarian lifestyles, so if this is you, then make sure to get 25 grams of protein each meal that fits your lifestyle choices.  For everyone else, make sure to eat vegetables with your protein.  Try to have some raw veggies.  If you have to cook them, lightly steam them or stir fry on low heat.  Opt to try and cooking in water or some sort of broth instead of processed vegetable oils.  Other than that, if you choose to eat carbohydrates, go for stuff that is minimally processed and with fiber.  Lentils, Chickpeas, Sweet Potatoes, Quinoa, Brown Rice, Buckwheat.  Consider soaking the grains or rice to help break down phytic acid and lectins. 

Are you ok?  Take a deep breath.  Take things step by step!  If that is all overwhelming, that is ok.  Break it down step by step.  Start with prioritizing protein.  Once you have that down, move on to veggies, and then finally good quality carbs.  Go at your pace.  All in all, keep taking small steps everyday!  Take a small step everyday to eat good food and make good choices.

And make sure to stay tuned for a mindset overhaul for 2021!  Post coming soon!