I hate diets and quick fixes. I hate “getting in shape for the summer” or “losing weight for a wedding.”
What I prefer is a lifestyle that sticks. I prefer to live each day in a way that is healthy, respectful of my body and mind, and doesn’t require an overhaul every January. I also like to be prepared with things like Stayfree Ultra Thins for when I want to keep up my fitness during that time of the month.
I certainly don’t always succeed but it’s habits that have gotten me to a good place. Our lives are really just a compilation of habits — good and bad — when you think about it.
Instead of thinking about how you want to lose 10 pounds or drastically change your life, let’s take off the pressure. It’s not that difficult — it’s just habit forming and you can definitely do that. We all form habits…it’s just a matter of forming the right ones.
7 Habits to Make a Permanent Lifestyle Change
1. The Water Habit. Drink one full glass of water:
- When you wake up
- After breakfast
- With morning snack
- With lunch
- With afternoon snack
- Before Dinner
- After dinner
It takes awhile to remember to do this but it does several things: 1) You get enough water for the day 2)It fills you up so you don’t overeat 3) Keeps your system regular and healthy 4) Delivers energy and a rosy glow. You have NOTHING to lose with this one (aside from having to pee a lot, but it’s worth it!)
2. Regular Yoga Stretching. This doesn’t mean you have to take a full on class but tuning into your body throughout the day is so important mentally and physically. Here’s when you should stretch:
- Upon waking or after first cup of coffee
- Mid-day break (get out of the desk chair!)
- After dinner
In the morning, your body needs to wake up and move. Get the creaks and aches out, get your muscles ready for the day. Mid-day is really important because offices aren’t good for anyone’s back or body. Evening stretching is most important for me. It lures me away from overeating (a big problem for me) and reminds me how good it feels to treat my body well. It’s a habit that I’m still working on.
3. Tea Time. I’m not the biggest fan of hot tea but I know it’s a good habit to have on hand. It’s good for you in its many forms — spices, ginger, green tea, etc. — and it gives you a moment to digest your food or just digest a moment. It’s especially important for me in the evenings when I need to unwind and — you guessed it — NOT turn to comfort food. Here’s a habit schedule for tea drinking:
- After lunch when you have the munchies. Make a habit to do it everyday.
- Before dinner when you are hungry but it’s not time to eat yet.
- After dinner when you are trying to unwind.
Especially at night, it gives you something to hold, which is therapeutic and something hot, which is comforting. I sip on “Sleepy Time” tea so it’s relaxing and helps me be ready for lights out.
4. Grocery Story Staples. A good rule of thumb? Have your go-to healthy stuff and buy it every week at the store — then make sure you actually eat it. Every day I bring lunch and snacks to work. They always include:
- Greek yogurt
- Healthy granola bar/snack
My main meal changes but I know pretty much everyday, I’m getting those nutrients. Unfortunately, I haven’t yet found a vegetable I enjoy bringing to work everyday so it’s something I’m working on but just the habit of bringing these items helps me maintain a healthy lifestyle.
5. Exercise Schedule. You knew this one was coming, right? I don’t know about you, but if I don’t have some kind of plan, it’s tough to get my exercise done. A few ways to form an exercise habit:
- Pick days and stick with them
- Choose a day to get started and ACTUALLY start
- Sign up for a class you have to be on time for
- Reward yourself with something like your favorite coffee afterward (if you are a morning exerciser like me)
- Do the same schedule for at least a month
These are just a few as you begin to incorporate healthy habits into your life. Let’s commit to healthy, long lasting, lifestyle changes instead of quick fixes that end in disappointment.
New year, new you!
Yoga is an integral part of a healthy lifestyle and who better to lead the yoga-lution than you. Inspired by athletic wear, Stayfree® pads feature flexible layers that move with your body from child’s pose to side crow. Visit http://www.stayfree.com/ to find which product best fits you or visit our Facebook to learn more about our mission. Also, don’t forget to use your Stayfree® purchase to get a 30-Day membership to My Yoga on Gaiam TV and access FREE yoga classes online now through March 12!
Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Stayfree via Mode Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Stayfree.
What healthy habits do you maintain? What’s one healthy lifestyle thing you’d like to achieve but struggle with?