Regardless of the season, motivating yourself to exercise or focus on your health can be a challenge. Somehow pulling out your swimsuit at the end of spring gets us in a spin and wanting to look up the latest quick fix challenge, but did you know summer bodies are made in winter?
The weather is slowly starting to heat up and the days are getting longer again. Now is the time to make lasting changes to your routine to see the real and lasting results you want to come summer, and this year no more bathing suit freak outs.
Check out the following advice and see how we plan to get on track at this time of year:
1. Clean out the fridge and kitchen cupboards now
Don’t wait till spring to do the clean of your fridge, pantry and cupboards. You can’t eat ‘bad food’ or less nutritious food if it isn’t in the fridge or house to start with. Unfortunately you can’t out-exercise a bad diet. Stock the fridge and pantry with nutritious things, high in fibre to help fill you up, but also be smart and pick less calorie laden foods, that way you can eat more of them when you feel like snacking.
2. Learn to cook nutritious food you enjoy eating
Buying healthy food is just one piece of the puzzle, knowing how to prepare it and then enjoying it is another. We can easily associate healthy food with boring food. If you want to stick to your nutritious food plan, you need to find it fun and enjoyable.
3. Watch your portion sizes
I know this nutrition message is getting a little repetitive, but it does make a difference. The notion of ‘finish everything on your plate’ has been ingrained in many people from an early age and can be a tough one to break. If there is less on the plate, there is less to finish.
4. Eat enough vegetables
Five servings daily to be exact. I have mentioned this before, but more than 90% of Australians do not eat enough of them. Vegetables are full of vitamins and minerals, low in energy and contain fibre to help keep us fuller for longer so a great thing to pad out any meal with and help you achieve the results you desire.
5. Get enough sleep
Is it no lie or secret, but sleep does affect your hunger hormones, hence getting enough of it is important for health and weight. Leptin is the hormone that helps to suppress appetite, while grehlin (growth hormone-
6. Exercise with a partner
Getting up and exercising in the cold of winter is hard, but if you have made a commitment to meet a friend it’s a little harder to press the snooze button again.
7. Organise active weekends and active catch-ups
Instead of meeting friends for yet another lunch or beverage session, change things up and get those endorphins running by doing something active instead. Meet them for a bush walk, try out a casual dance or gym class or even indoor rock climbing. It’s ok to have a coffee after, but don’t undo all your good work by ordering something with more energy than you just burnt.
Tell your friend / partner / family member what your goals are and plan to check in with them weekly to help keep you accountable and on track. It’s easy to slip up, but when you have to report to someone that make w world of difference.