Monday, June 18, 2012

Five tips to focus on in your fit life journey

"My fit life journey" can mean different things to different people. But weather you're trying to lose a few pounds, overcome obesity or maintain a healthy weight, the basics of living a fit life are basically the same.

When I started my fit life journey a few years ago, the tips I'm providing here were considered non-negotiable for me. And even today, as I'm closer to my healthy weight goal than I've been in two decades, I try to remind myself to stick within these guidelines in order to stay on track.

So check out this list, then comment. What do you do to ensure your journey a fit life journey?
  1. Hydration - Drink water all day long. How much? Google that question and add your specific weight and geographic area, because body mass and climate both have an impact. In general, drink eight 8-ounce cups of water per day, plus more if you're overweight and/or living in a dry climate or at high altitude.
  2. Portion size - The most common mistake any of us make with regard to our diet is eating more than our body needs. This takes focus, because the system these days appears to be stacked against us. For example, typical meat portions at restaurants are rarely less than eight ounces, but an appropriate serving of any meat is about four ounces. See a doctor or nutritionist (or Google) to find out how many calories your body needs. 
  3. Food is fuel, not your friend - Plan to have smaller portions spread out over the course of the day to ensure your body has nutrients accessible at times it needs them most. Then you won't be as tempted to have something to eat the next time anxiety, stress or emotional drain sets in.
  4. Plan ahead - By cooking and pre-packaging healthy meals in advance, say on Sunday night before a busy work week, you can avoid the pitfalls of eating out. This could save you considerable amounts of calories over the course of your week because even the "healthy" meals at restaurants often come served in portion sizes larger than your dietary needs.
  5. Exercise every day - They say you should always have rest days built in to your schedule, and that's true. You shouldn't hit the gym or go hiking or running every day of the week. But you should infuse an attitude of exercise into every single day. Take the stairs instead of the elevator at work. Park at the parking spot farthest from the door at work or at the grocery store. Take the dogs for a walk twice a day around the block instead of just having them do their business just beyond the front stoop or in the back yard. You will be surprised how this speeds you toward your goals.
These are not just a few tips to be implemented from time to time but rather they are key ingredients to living a fit life. Don't just pick up one or two of these tips and try them out; Commit to implementing them this week and focus on adhearing to a plan for at least four weeks in order to see results. Once you have made these five tips a habit, check back here for more tips for making the most of your fit life journey.

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