A Flexible Health and Wellness Guide That Actually Works

A new year doesn’t always have to bring completely new changes. I find it hard to stick with complete change because of the dedication and time it takes to keep change thriving so, I stick with moderate change. But that’s not to say that change isn’t beneficial and rewarding a lot of the time. This brings me to my annual struggle to stay fit and healthy not just for the first few weeks, but for the whole 365-day time period. I had to think of something that could stay alive for more than the duration of time it took me to binge-watch the first season of The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina on Netflix. So, I came up with a plan.

Step One: The Mindset

This crucial step is often left out of traditional health and wellness plans I’ve come across because I guess everyone is expected to come with the mindset of pure dedication and positivity. Let’s be realistic. The only person who will prevent me from achieving my New Year’s goals is myself. Coming in and thinking that a workout partner and a dietician can help cure my unwillingness to commit is not fair to either party involved.

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To stay motivated, I like to keep a photo journal of my physical progress and a tab of notes on my phone for emotional progress. Right before I go to bed, I look at past entries to better reflect on how far I’ve come. It’s amazing how you don’t notice changes happening right in front of you unless you document them. It’s easy to judge yourself but try to look at every picture as another opportunity for positive reflection. Know that with every picture and entry made you are paving the way to your own individual path of goal-achievement and self-determination. 

Step Two: The Fitness Routine

This step is one of my favorite steps because of how versatile it is. Physical fitness comes in various levels and finding the right one for you is as simple as jogging every other day, playing around with beginner level weights at the gym and even combining multiple workouts and techniques to find out what works best for you.

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To stay motivated I enjoy setting goals very early on in the process. Now I know myself and if I try to make these goals in the slightest bit unattainable, I won’t stick with them. Not to say that goals can’t be made to challenge oneself, but the healthiest balance is found in trying out new things. Recently, I took up yoga as a new fitness goal for myself. Granted, I have a long way to go before I am a yoga guru, but with my own abilities and restrictions in mind, I am able to experiment with new things and keep my workout routine interesting.

Step Three: The Diet

Oh, the dreaded step three. Nobody wants to give up all the delicious, un-nutritious food they’ve come to know so well over years of habitual consumption. What if I told you that it is possible to have your cake and eat it too (quite literally)? You wouldn’t believe me, but I am here to convince you otherwise. The best way to stick with a diet is to simply enjoy the diet. It’s as simple as that.

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To stay on my track with my diet, I always make sure I have a cheat snack every day. I have tried doing regular cheat days and cheat holidays in the past and it just never worked out for me. I would end up consuming more calories than if I were to eat a cheat snack every day for the whole week. Which is exactly how I propose it should be. Instead of building up these monstrous cravings for one occasion, sprinkle it over a longer period of time to obtain the most rewarding results.

The truth to a successful health and wellness regimen is finding it in yourself to commit to the journey. It is never easy to change, but with the right mindset, fitness plan and diet, you can cultivate a foundation strong enough to last you many New Years to come.

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