6 tips to become a healthier you in 2016
At almost 40 years of age, I'm not only fitter and stronger, but I’m also healthier and happier than I was in my 20s. There is nothing more important than your health and there is no better time than a new year to start improving it.
Creating healthy habits will take time and effort in both the kitchen and at the gym. However, once you start to feel and see the results these new habits will become second nature. We all lead busy lives and it’s easy to make excuses, but we need to strive to be the best version of ourselves to ensure optimum performance – at work, at home, in the gym and in our social lives.
Above all, I am my happiest when I feel healthy and these are my top tips to create the healthiest, happiest version of yourself in 2016.
1. Set an achievable goal
What do you really want? Whether it’s weight loss, addressing health issues or fitness – you need to be specific. Set realistic goals that you can measure and achieve. Once you have set your goal, you need a time-based plan. That way, you can measure your success and stay motivated. And don’t stress, goals can always be reset.
2. Be prepared with your food
Weekly menu planning and meal prep will help you save time and money. You can find plenty of nutritious and delicious recipes online and I highly recommend to use an app to track your intake too. It’s so important to be aware of just how much fuel you are taking in and how much you are burning, I use MyFitnessPal and the new Goodlife App to log my food diary and all of my workouts, which are both very user-friendly.
3. Schedule your training
I write my weekly exercise plan in a calendar along with all our family medical, work and school appointments. Exercise should become part of your daily routine, just like brushing your teeth. There should be no excuses – we can all find an extra half an hour in the day. Mix up your training to stay motivated and do more of what you enjoy. There is no point running on the treadmill if you hate to run! For me, exercise is cheap therapy and a non-negotiable part of my day.
4. Be accountable
Tell your friends and family what you are doing so they can support you and even train alongside you to create some healthy competition. Personal training can help educate and keep you motivated, while a journal of your food intake, workouts and emotions can help you learn what is working for you and what isn't.
5. Track your progress and reward yourself
Track your progress every week, whether it’s your weight, measurements, mental health or how your clothes fit. When you get good results, reward yourself. Enjoy a cheat meal once a week as a reward so you don't feel deprived and overindulge in a moment of weakness. And most importantly, don’t punish yourself if you fall off the wagon occasionally. Just remember to pick yourself up, dust yourself off and re-commit to your goals tomorrow.
6. Challenge yourself
You are more capable than you think! Once you have achieved your goals, set new ones and then smash them. Try a new class, climb a mountain, sign up for a half-marathon, jump on a machine at the gym you’ve never tried before and inspire others to come along for the ride. Your ‘new normal’ is all about living a healthy and active lifestyle that you can share with your children, friends and family.
Most importantly, don't forget to reward yourself for all your hard work! Goodlife's new partnership with flybuys means you can now collect bonus points every time you work out. Join or link your memberships today!