Seven Steps to Get You There
1. Get quality sleep
You’ve heard us say it many times but sleep is important. Getting 6-8 solid hours of sleep is essential for your body to rejuvinate, replenish, and repair itself. Your body is doing a lot while you sleep. Beyond the health benefits, think how much happier, smoother, and relaxed your day goes when you wake up ready to tackle the activities of your day.
2. Surround yourself with people that encourage you.
Most people are hard on themselves to begin with. We blast ourselves for not being perfect. Perfection in our diet, looks, actions, talk, relationships, and work will not happen. We need to be our best but don’t beat yourself up for a failure; learn from it and move on. The last thing we need to do is spend time with people that are critical toward us or people that are always bleak and downhearted. Spend time with people who see you and value you for who you are. They are the ones who make you feel like you can accomplish anything.
3. Exercise regularly
Exercise raises your serotonin levels. You know those happy ones. The physical challenges you overcome in your training will boost your confidence outside of the gym as well. Exercise sends you a message that you are worth the time and effort you make for yourself.
4. Eat a clean healthy diet
Eating clean healthy food is another way of sending a message to yourself that you are worth it. You are worth the best foods, the time to plan your meals and prepare them. Avoid processed foods. Focus on foods fresh fruits and vegetables and a variety of protein. Remember to healthy diet keeps your hormones in balance, which helps activate the cycle of a happier, healthier you.
5. Finish what you Started
Something motivated you to start each and every action you do each day. An angry boss might motivate you to be on time each day to work, while a small paycheck might motivate you to show up to work. There are also motivations to do laundry, plan meals, make physical training each time you are scheduled. Once you start something you will soon find there are often obstacles that get in our way. Laundry might be put on hold while dealing with a sibling dispute, dinner might be late on the table because an unexpected phone call interrupted your prep time. Each time you overcome an obstacle and succeed by finishing your task it adds to your sense of accomplishment. Taking the obstacles seriously will enable you to focus on it and then get back to your plan. It is a great feeling to start something and cross it off your daily list. It is even a bigger boost to cross things off your weekly or monthly to do list.
6. Eliminate “Can’t” and “But” from your vocabulary
Those obstacles that get in your way when working toward a goal will come. How we handle those obstacles define our success. When we start allowing those obstacles and life to get in our way we often start making excuses. You’ll start off by saying “ I can’t get the laundry done today because the kids were acting up.” “I didn’t get to my training session but I did walk a lot while doing errands.” Those words are self-defeating. Turn those two little words into possibilities. You can do anything you truly set your mind to.
7. Focus on yourself
All of us were created differently with special talents and abilities. They define us, they give us character and personality. We all have something we are really good at. Focus on those things. I’m not saying we shouldn’t stretch our selves in our weaker areas but comparing ourselves to others is unfair. You are unique. Enjoy that part of you that makes you special.
To Your Best Health,
I am so glad I don’t have to be perfect. Think of being 90%. There will be days when you are successful, and others when you are not.
But missing one mark here and there doesn’t call out the world distress signal. In fact, one or two missed check marks means you are perfectly human.
Allow yourself the struggle of not making it the first time out, maybe not even the second or the third. You might get six boxes checked off and then miss the seventh box.
Breaking your perfect score is not the end of the line. Stop trying to be perfect. Build on the struggles you have. Make yourself stronger each time through.
It is practice. I’ll say this over and over. Practice. I hear myself telling my kids often, don’t get so uptight when you don’t succeed the first time through.
At Christmas my kids decorated a ginger bread house. Karalynn is such a perfectionist that when it didn’t come out like the picture she was in tears. I had to remind her again that it was her first time and the people who did that house had practiced many times before taking that picture.
The same is true with your nutrition. After working at or practicing your habit of eating 3 (maybe 4) meals a day, you will find that the amount at which you have to work at it next week will be less. It will become easier.
The same will become true of Hunger Mastery. Many of us have struggled with this one a bit more but we are working at adjusting our schedule. It is becoming easier.
We started a new skill to practice. Don’t expect 100% right away.
In fact you might have to adjust how you are going to get better at this new skill. Maybe focusing on it two meals a day, Maybe knowing you can do it Monday through Friday.
But don’t worry about tomorrow. What can you do today to be successful?
To Your Best Health,
"I just start eating and don't stop. What I'd like to know is how I CHANGE that behavior."
For some people this is an easier process of undoing than others. While some people have one or two poor habits to change you might have several- no worries.
Think of it as a scan of yarn that is all tangled up. Its going to take some time undoing and pulling on strands only to find that it tightened the knot. Often experimenting with certain types of eating patterns will show us ways we can either loosen or tightened your knot. For example eating in a window of time is one pattern of nutrition that you might explore. It can solve some of your poor eating habits. Using a 8 hour window where you eat all your meals during that time, could be just what you need in order to stop night time snacking. Other options include only having a piece of fruit after having 3 servings of veggies first. This often gives you just what you need to help you achieve all the servings of vegetables you've been missing from your eating plan.
Other things will keep loosening the knot, but it will take time to untangle it all. Pull on one string each day. (pulling is the action item that you can do today) See what happens and if that string gives a bit- pull on it more tomorrow.
You're doing great showing up. Don't stop doing something each day to make yourself better.
To your best health,
Planning meals has been proven to help you in your health journey. Its right up there with stepping on the scale if your goal is weight loss. On top of that there are other side benefits that you'll love is that it saves time, relieves stress, and keeps money in your wallet. And yet, it stills feels like the one thing that holds us back. Lets look at meal planning with a slightly different twist.
What if you look at planning more like giving you options?
Here is what I would do as an experiment to see how you succeed with this version of meal planning.
1. List out all the dinner meals you and your family enjoy eating during this time of year. That list will probably be a bit different in the Summer vs. the Fall vs. the cold of Winter. How many did you get? Aim for at least 10 different dinner meals. Remember some of these might be the quick options like picking up a rotisserie chicken while others are all day cooking affairs like homemade spaghetti sauce.
2. Do you have on hand all the items to make these meals? Check your cupboards, freezer, and fridge. Some items can be kept, like canned goods, in your cupboard; others are best fresh so you'll have to purchase those items. But then others can be pulled from the freezer when you need them.
3. Look at your schedule. See what is coming up that might pull you away from making a meal or that might require a meal that is very quick to make. I leave cans of tuna in my cupboard because when fast and speedy is required, I can quickly put tuna on a salad or cook up some tuna patties. If you will be away from home one night, you'll end up with more options to chose from on the other evenings.
4. Again take a peak at your schedule, this time looking for those times when you might be able to spend more time in your kitchen than usual. I often can do this on Sundays. Its during this time, I prep what I can for other meals, but I can also make a dish that takes more time than I usually have to prepare dinner.
5. With your favorite dinner meal ideas in one hand and the list of items you need to make these meals in another, head off to the store.
6. Now when it comes time for your next dinner, you've got options to choose from.
What do you think?
To Your Best Health,
Going out to a restaurant can be difficult. Last time I went I found 4 items on the menu, that could easily be adjusted. Each of those I needed to substitute an item or ask the server not to bring out something but I walked away totally satisfied.
It can be done.
My Tips to you:
Be prepared when eating out: Look over the menu before you go. Decide before you go. Foods look and smell tempting so don't let your will power be put to the test.
Ask the server not to leave the bread on the table or not to leave you the appetizer plate.
Soups just like casseroles will have added hidden things like sugars in them.
Look for menu items that have no sauce or glaze. But you can also ask the server not to add that to your dish.
Order meats that are grilled.
Instead of rice or a potato many restaurants will double your portion size of veggies without additional cost.
When ordering a salad ask for the croutons, cheese, or crispy pita strips to be left off as well as the salad dressing. I have found many places that will bring out a bottle of olive oil and vinegar so you can pour your own on. But when all else fails, ask to have a few lemon slices brought out. Squeezed lemon on your salad is fantastic!
If you are not sure of the ingredient list – ask
If available, you can request the special allergy menus, too, which usually include gluten-free, dairy-free, wheat-free, soy-free, etc. options...
Be over - the - top kind when asking for special requests or substitutions, your server will appreciate it and will more than likely help you out even more.
More tips from those who frequent restaurants? Let us know where you eat and what you get.
To Your Best Health,
I wanted to write a quick little note to encourage you. Starting a new way of living healthy is challenging. I've been there. In fact some days I feel like I am still there. Each day please wake up to make the decision to live healthy again. Post reminders on your bathroom mirror, your car's dashboard, and your computer screen at work. These little reminders will help you to continue to make decisions that will further your progress until they become more natural. Our goal is to make small changes each day that become our new normal. People that meet us a month from now will know a different you than the one standing in front of your mirror today.
Now there will be days when all goes well and it feels like smooth sailing. Some days will be a bit more challenging but you'll muddle through. Still other days will seem like you've only stepped backward.
It will get easier. Take baby steps. As you increase in confidence make those steps a bit bigger and stronger. Soon you'll look back through time and see all those little steps have added up.
You've got this.
From one whose walked these steps before you.
Eating PPW, protein, produce and water, doesn't mean you're eating broccoli, chicken, and salad at every single meal. This recipe is a great way to enjoy, a healthy protein, a wonderful fat, and a great tasting vegetable for breakfast.
Avocado Cauliflower Toast
1/2 head cauliflower, or use 2 cups fresh or frozen riced cauliflower
3 eggs, divided
extra-virgin olive oil
1 avocado, peeled and pitted
Juice of 1 lemon
pinch red chili flakes
Grate cauliflower on a box grater. Transfer to a large bowl and mix with 1 egg and a large pinch of salt.
In a large skillet over medium heat, heat olive oil. Add 2 big scoops of cauliflower mixture to pan and shape into a round patty. Repeat to make a second patty. Let cook until golden brown, about 5 minutes, then carefully flip. Cook 3 more minutes. Transfer to a plate.
In same skillet, fry remaining 2 eggs and set aside.
In a small bowl, mash avocado with lemon juice. Season with salt. Spread on top of cauliflower “toast.” Sprinkle with red chili flakes. Top each with a fried egg. Serve immediately.
To Your Best Health,
I just enjoyed a morning with several of my clients. We connected on food, family, and life. Most of us had coffee, some sipped on a smoothie while one had breakfast. You guessed it, she had salad. It looked delicious and she had us all wishing we had waited for breakfast as well.
Why a salad? Why at breakfast?
She said in order to give herself the best chance to make progress towards her goal, she needed to stay out of balance. Balance for her was her normal way of eating and living. She purposely is trying to stay out of 'normal' - out of balance.
I totally agree and have seen getting off balance gives you the opportunity for success. By staying away from what is normal eating for you, you'll have to focus on being not normal. You'll find new ways to find satisfaction in food and in life.
Here are 4 ways we strategized to keep us off balance:
Mental focus and physical determination will allow you to be off balance and yet move closer to your goal.
What will throw you off balance today?
To Your Best Health,
Wouldn't it be lovely to have everything change and be the way we want it to be with the snap of our fingers? I know I would like that.
Some people can make a 360 degree turn around. They have that type of personality. Usually it is coupled with a circumstance or situation- maybe a disaster of sorts. For those people a visit to the doctor with a poor diagnosis has prompted complete and utter behavior changes. For Dean, it was the death of our son and realizing life is too short that allowed him to put that stake down in the ground. He did a 360 degree change in his eating, lifestyle, and fitness.
For others it is a slow process, a step by step change. It doesn't happen in one decision but many decisions over the course of time. That is me. While Dean could totally change himself, I dug my heals in and took the slow turn.
Today I describe that slow turn as 1% each day. I look for just a little thing I can do each day to make myself 1% better. But if I take those little turns each day, after a year of slow turning I am 360 % different.
So today, I am waiting until I am hungry to eat. That is my little bit I'm focusing on today. I know I will eat, but I don't have to eat when the clock tells me its time.
What can you do today to make that 1% change?
Then tomorrow find and decide on the next 1%.
To Your Best Health,
I know plenty of “all or nothing” kind of people. Either they do something flat out, 100%, no if's and or buts, or you don’t do it at all.
Often they get knocked off track – because they're not perfect – they can get aggravated and just throw in the towel.
Sometimes, if everything isn’t perfect from the get go, if all the ducks don't line up in a row right from the start, It never gets off the ground!
So why am I telling you all this?
Because based on my experience with hundreds of clients, there are a lot of you that are a lot like people I already know.
Mulling over in your head all the reason’s why you can’t, which in turn paralyzes you into taking any action at all.
In the arena of diet and nutrition I see this all the time, and my goal is to help you break out of that cycle. We can talk all day long about what your ideal nutrition plan might look like, but then a dangerous thing happens – you start thinking about it, and your mind begins creating all these scenarios and “what if’s” of why it can’t or won’t work.
Here’s what I want you to do to break out of that cycle.
I don’t want you to worry about doing everything right – right now.
Choose just one thing you can do every day and build off that.
Then build off that success. It might look like this:
Follow that pattern consistently, and pretty soon you have made a significant change into both your habits and how you look and feel!
Here’s a summary of what I have learned from that applies to you …
So let’s hear it. In the comment box below tell me Just One Thing you are going to start doing today.
To Your Best Health,