Starting a health journey can be a jaunting task, but it doesn't have to be. Here are some simple steps you can take to get started and really make a difference.
Set realistic goals: Start by setting realistic goals that you can achieve - don't go for extreme changes that you can't maintain in the long term. You can start with things like drinking more water or taking a 30-minute walk each day. It seems small, but it's doable and can make a huge difference.
Create a plan: Once you have set your goals, create a plan on how you will achieve them. For example, if your goal is to take a 30 minute walk each day, try scheduling it in your calendar like a meeting you have to attend. Then plan the rest of your day around it!
Get support: Seek support from family, friends, or a healthcare professional. Having someone to support, encourage and keep you accountable can make a big difference in achieving your goals. My clients always tell me they also appreciate understanding the "why" behind their protocol - it helps keep them motivated to make change.
Stay positive: This is huge and might be the hardest part. Don't beat yourself up if you slip up. Remember that change takes time, and setbacks are normal. Stay positive and keep moving forward.
Stay active: Exercise is essential for a healthy lifestyle. Find an activity that you enjoy, such as walking, swimming, or dancing, and make it a regular part of your routine. Ideally, you always have resistance training some part of your routine - this will provide the most benefit.
Start with one: Start by changing one meal you eat, not everything at once. I usually tell my clients to focus on breakfast first. This is partially because I want to encourage them to do small changes over time, but also because how you start out can really determine how the rest of the day will go.
Get enough sleep: Sleep is essential for good health - especially mental health. Inadequate sleep can increase irritability and stress. Chronic insomnia can increase your chances of developing a mood disorder, such an anxiety or depression. Aim for 7-8 hours.
Stress management: Emotional stress and unresolved trauma can trigger the sympathetic "fight or flight" nervous system state. This state suppresses digestion, immune function, detoxification and regeneration. Not good. Try to find ways to manage stress, such as meditation, deep breathing exercises, reading a book you enjoy, going for a walk outside, etc.
Stay hydrated: Water is a key nutrient in every single reaction in the body. If you're struggling with anxiety or depression, dehydration could be a huge factor. It is needed to get the amino acids to the brain in an effective manner to create neurotransmitters. Aim for 1/2 your body weight in ounces per day + 1-1.5oz for every ounce of diuretic you drink.
What do you think you can start implementing today? Let me know in the comments below!