Since my early teen years I have always been very body conscious. I have never been extremely thin, in fact my weight is extremely up and down, and like many other people it can really affect my mood. I don’t find that eating healthily comes naturally to me, and I am awful when it comes to dieting. I have zero will power. Last year, when going through some relationship problems and being stressed all the time about my health I lost so much weight. I joke that ‘it was the best diet I ever went on’, but it really was. Obviously, I then had major surgery and was sat on the sofa for a good 6 months, so I regained everything and up until a few weeks ago I felt awful in myself. For some reason, something ticked in my brain in the last few weeks, not just because my weight is starting to go down again, but I think I naturally am developing a much more healthy attitude towards it.
Living a healthy, balanced lifestyle is about fuelling your body with good and nutritious food, whilst also being able to enjoy a giant slice of chocolate cake, guilt free!
I think I am definitely one of those people who loves to enjoy life and thinks that it is way too short to waste doing things that you don’t enjoy. I appreciate entirely that we need to remain fit and healthy to live a long and happy life, although I do know that giving into cravings and enjoying unhealthy food is also the key to living long, and truly happily. So what are the best ways to do this, and what attitude shall we have to make sure that we are able to carry this out on a daily basis?
Everything in Moderation
The best and most successful way to stay healthy is by really understanding that it is everything in moderation. If like me you enjoy carbs and cake, there is no reason why you cannot have this in your diet, however in moderation. For example, if I have a slice of cake in the week and I m trying to be good I will tend to have a much smaller portion. Same with carbohydrates. I will never be someone who can give them up, but I try my best not to eat them with every meal and put more veg on my plate in proportion to my protein and nutrients. Also, a big thing I have got a lot better at, is if I have already had a sweet treat in a day, generally I won’t let myself have anything else. Having two would not be in moderation.
Realistic Exercise Regimes
Exercise is very important for our bodies, although I do truly believe that you have to stick to a good balance. Realistically going once a week isn’t enough, but in my view any more than four is way too much. Don’t push yourself too much mentally and create unrealistic goals. The only way I manage to get there, which I do have to admit doesn’t happen every week, is to mix my workouts up and not take it too seriously.
Homemade Meals & Snacks
With it being said about everything in moderation, I also think the best way to stay healthy is by most of your diet being made up of homemade hearty meals. In the food shop there are so many items available designed to make our lives easier, however there are very few that are good for us. I enjoy making food from scratch knowing exactly what is in it, whether it contain loads of butter or sugar. As long as it doesn’t contain the crap preservatives and chemicals found in other products, in my head it is totally okay. Try to be as organised as possible with your food prep and ensure that you are always choosing homemade alternatives as opposed to shop bought items just because they’re easy.
Ignoring the Scales
Something I learnt years ago is that for me, the scales are a no go area. Not only do I find it a horrible feeling of how low you can feel after seeing the number, but also I have learnt that it doesn’t actually matter. Really, if you are exercising correctly and are toned, you will have a lot of body muscle, therefore you will be heavy. Personally, I go purely on dress size, what I am able to wear and how I am feeling in myself. The weight on the scales doesn’t matter in the slightest and we all have a very unhealthy attitude towards it at some point in our lives.
Always eat your breakfast. I have always been so awful at this, mainly because my stomach just can’t really take it when I wake up, which I know is the case for a lot of other people. However, I have learnt that it is so much better for your body and your diet if you do. I can never eat anything massive, unless it is after a Sunday lie in, however even something simple like a banana can really do the job.
Having a good routine is the easiest way of staying on track, staying healthy and making good choices for when it comes to food. This doesn’t just mean having a routine when it comes to work and general life, but also how you use your spare time. I have got into a good routine now of which evenings I cook fresh meals, which mornings or evening I go the gym and even when I am having my rest time. Staying up to date with everything can really help you to stay on track.
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