The holidays have come and gone, and if you’re like most of us, you may have an extra pound or two to show for it. Small changes can have big – and lasting – results when incorporated into your routine over time, and in a way that works specifically for you. Here are some tips that will help you restore your health and embrace the new year, one healthy habit at a time.
- Drink water. An easy way to build healthy habits is to drink more water. This habit will hydrate you, flush out toxins, and balance out some of the alcohol consumed over the holidays. Drink a full glass alongside your morning coffee, and add a glass to each meal and at each snack break. If you don’t already, carry a water bottle with you throughout your day.
- Take advantage of fitness sales and deals. It’s a standing joke that January is a busy time in the fitness industry because of everyone’s New Year’s Resolutions. Take advantage of the sales in order to stock up on athletic clothing, gear, water bottles, and other equipment that you may need.
- Shift your paradigm. A helpful tip to evaluate your daily routine is to take the perspective of someone outside yourself. That person might point out that you are able to bike to work instead of drive, or that you could take the stairs instead of the elevator. They might advise you to walk to the park for a few minutes after picking up the kids from school, to get some fresh air and exercise while the traffic dies down. Grab a friend and brainstorm some healthy habits and ideas – listen to what they suggest, and then try it for a few days.
- Be realistic about what you can and will do. After trying out new things, be honest about what you can – and will – do. Maybe biking to work every day is not realistic, but you like the idea of biking two days a week. Perhaps going to the park after school doesn’t work, but taking a family walk after dinner is just right. Healthy habits become effective when they fit well within your own preferences and limitations.
- Eliminate and add. Tired of dieting and restricting yourself? Then forget cutting out all sugar and just cut out soda, or that nightly candy habit. Consider drinking coffee only in the morning instead of all day long so that you will sleep better. Small and consistent eliminations can enhance your energy level and overall sense of well-being, as can small additions. Add a veggie to your lunches and dinners. Add a small fruit to your breakfast. And add a glass of water regularly!