This is a guest post by Sarah K.Weiss, registered Dietitian, RD/LDN. I met Sarah at Forever Wellness, where I am getting the LED treatment and she does nutritional counseling . I was instantly drawn to her. She has my story and my struggle. We’ve also had success with weight loss, however, I have issues maintaining my weight loss while she has mastered the art of maintaining her weight loss. A lot of it is self-sabotage and some of it is learning to find balance in my black and white world. She is taking me through nutritional counseling for the next six weeks and she has agreed to share some of her valuable wisdom with you, my readers.
Here we are again, at the start of a new year, which naturally means making another new years resolution. It seems like our resolutions are not much different than last year’s. Why is that? And why do we keep making January 1st the day to make changes in our lives?
Well, because everyone is on board with us and all the support is motivating. We wipe the slate clean, become overeager and set rather ambitious goals. Shoot for the stars, of course, but we’ve likely just placed ourselves back into the diet cycle.
We start out the year with amazing intentions, like most, to get in shape and improve our health. You’re chugging along great until one day, your alarm didn’t go off, your kids are now late for school and you’re late for work. In a panic, you slip back to an old habit of grabbing some calorie-dense, convenient breakfast on the go.
Oh the goodness of that greasy breakfast sandwich! Then the brain fog clears and you realize (or think) your diet is ruined for the day due to your less than ideal breakfast choice. This “ruined” day turns into a week and so on. With several attempts in the future to get back on track, you continually fall into the same cycle, making no real progress.
But don’t fret, there’s always NEXT year, right? We’ve become so bound by time that we fail to realize we can bounce back at any point, not just January 1st. If breakfast was a disaster, so what. That’s life. Take a moment to reflect on how you can better manage this situation next time, like opting for fruit & nuts. Make mindful choices at lunch and dinner, and keep it moving.
See, the day isn’t ruined at all. In fact, you had an opportunity to learn. The more you learn to flow with life, instead of against it, the easier it becomes. THIS is the type of resolution we should be setting: changing our mindset to see adversity in life as opportunity to learn, being more forgiving with ourselves and working towards finding our own, realistic balance in life.
If you’ve started the year with a goal to 50 lose pounds, eliminate gluten, or go completely vegan, maybe start slow. Keep those goals, but set a realistic path to get there. Start by giving these 6 goals a try, or better yet, come up with your own realistic goals to fit your life and where you want to go with your wellness.
6 Goals to Begin Finding YOUR Balance in Life
- Drink enough water-
Staying adequately hydrated will impact your body in so many ways. Aim for half your weight in ounces each day, increasing intake with fluid loss from heat or exercise.
- Reduce processed, calorie-dense foods-
Anything that comes in a package or has a label, become skeptical. This isn’t to say it’s all bad, BUT the bad significantly outweighs the good. Read the ingredients – if you don’t know what they are, your body doesn’t either. Start eliminating these!
- Include plants at every meal/snack-
Fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, load up on these nutrient-dense foods. Plants are so amazing for your body in more ways than we even know. Every color offers something different, so be colorful. If you look at your plate and all you see are neutral colors (meat, potatoes, bread), change this!
- Find the hidden sugar-
We all know sugar is bad, right? Do we actually know how much we are consuming is the real question though. We want to aim for less than 20-30 grams daily, so start looking closer into your diet to see where these sugars are occurring. Trust me, they are in places you wouldn’t expect. If it tastes sweet, there’s some type of sugar.
- Move your body-
It can be through a sport, kayaking, yoga, anything. It doesn’t always have to be the gym, especially at the start of this lifestyle change when you may not be so comfortable yet. Find some activity you enjoy doing that gets your body moving and do it often.
- Most importantly: Allow life to happen!
We can’t control those chaotic mornings and have everything happens as we plan. We don’t want it to either – this is what keeps life interesting. We just have to surrender a bit and trust the process. The more we fight the flow, the harder life seems. Allow for unhealthy occasions and flow with it…
Growing up on a farm in rural Indiana, you’d think I ate fresh, healthy foods… wrong. Meat and potatoes are the staple of our diet. Living an unhealthy, sedentary lifestyle eventually led me straight into the arms of obesity. At 5’4″, I weighed 180 lbs. at my heaviest. Was I happy with this? No. But like most, I did not know what to do and did NOT want to do it the right way. I tried all the shortcut, fad diets. Nothing worked for very long, if at all.
Half way through college, something clicked. I found some motivation to try the unthinkable… eating healthier & being (somewhat) active. BOOM! I was able to shed 60 lbs in what seems like a short amount of time. No supplements, no fasting, no BS. Life changing, to say the least.
My journey made me want to help others take on this challenging yet rewarding lifestyle change. I left my first real job as an investment broker and became a Registered Dietitian.
Through my experiences, I’ve found that overall wellness is so essential. I don’t mean eating your leafy greens every day (but do it!).. I mean finding your balance. Have guidelines, follow them. At times, break them and be at peach with it.