My Top 5 Tips for Getting and Staying Healthy…Basic, easy to do “things”…. Keep in mind, I am not a doctor, dietician, or trainer…I am a mom, wife, runner, and diabetic who tries to live a healthy life. This is what works for me. What works for you might be different. And always follow the guidelines given to you by your doctor, dietician, etc.
So what works for me:
1. Exercise. Get moving. Find an activity that you like and do it. No excuses. There is something for everyone – walking, dancing, running, biking, swimming, Zumba. I love running. And I do it every single day. Having to walk right now because I am pregnant, but I am still out and about. Moving. If you have a hard time motivating yourself, join a group or hire a personal trainer. Go to a gym, park, or friend’s house. Buy yourself a workout outfit you really like. Or find a pair of running shoes that you really want. But most importantly, make the time. Put it on your calendar. And stick to it.
2. Rest. Yes, rest. This is the hardest tip for me to follow. Rest. With two young kids and two dogs (one being a puppy), resting is often put on the back burner. But rest is so important. Just as important as exercise for me. I am not a napper, so I really try to get to bed at a decent hour. I wind down a bit by watching some tv and then off to bed. I definitely feel so much better on the days I get a good night of sleep. More energetic the next day so I actually get more done. Rest and sleep. Get it.
3. Eat healthy. I love food. All types of food. But I try to eat healthy. Being a type 1 diabetic and runner makes me think about what I am eating. How I am fueling my body. Food does make a difference for me. Sure I have “treats”, but most of my daily caloric intake is nutritious – lower in sugar and saturated fats (healthy fats are a must). You all know to eat foods from all the food groups with more emphasis on fruits and veggies and whole grains. So I am not gonna spend time on that. Instead, I will share a few top of mind thoughts:
– Make a grocery list. I love grocery shopping. In fact, I go to the store several times a week. I enjoy seeing what is new, comparing brands, and reading labels. Many of you are probably thinking that’s a bit strange, but that is me. Ask my kids. They always wanna know how many items we need to buy. That way they can gauge how long an adventure it is going to be. But back to the list. Make a list and stick to it. And make the list full of healthy options. Plan out what you are going to eat. You don’t have to make fancy meals. There are so many easy options out there. Having a list makes me (and you) accountable – less tempted to fill the cart with junk food.
– Cook and bake healthy. Use PAM in your frying pans (I use PAM for everything and add a little water when frying meat or vegetables). Bake or grill your food. So yummy. Substitute high fat options-butter, oil, mayo for low-fat options-applesauce, Smartbalance oil, reduced fat mayo.
– Before you stick food in your mouth, think about what you are eating. Is it a healthy choice? Take the time to sit down so you can relax and eat healthy at the same time. Enjoy your meals and snacks. Don’t just shove food in your mouth. Fuel your body appropriately.
4. Have fun. I like this one. It is probably the easiest tip. Have fun. Sounds easy, but a lot of time we get so busy with the “must dos” in life that we forget to have fun. Laugh, play, do something you love doing. All of us have activities or hobbies that we love. Find the time (don’t cut into your exercise time though). Or better yet, find an activity that is fun and considered exercise. I love to run. I literally have fun running, especially when running with friends. Sit down (rest), eat a healthy snack, and make a list of what is fun for you. Be spontaneous. Write down whatever pops into your head. Think about activities you loved to do as a kid. Do them with your kids or a friend. I even bought jump ropes a few months ago (for my kids), but I ended up having as much fun with them as they did. Having fun should not be hard. It should be fun.
5. Go to the doctor, dentist, etc. Take care of yourself. See whatever medical professionals you need to see. For me, this means the endocrinologist and dentist every 6 months and the OB/GYN and ophthalmologist once a year. Life changes though so be flexible to your own needs. Don’t compare yourself to others. Follow the guidelines of what your health care professional recommends for you. Be sure they have a plan of action for you, and always ask questions. I often go to the doctor with a list of questions. Staying in tune with your health is important. You are responsible for yourself.
Well, those are my 5 tips…Nothing crazy…Probably stuff you knew…But just wanted to share. Hope you take away a tidbit or two. Time for me to pick up the kids, and then we are swinging thru the grocery store.