You want to set health and fitness goals for the new year. But let’s face it you hate planning. You hate the idea of ‘SMART’ goals, or spending a lot of time deciding ‘targets’, ‘time frames’, ‘progress reviews’ and other waffle from the world of work. So what can you do?
How can you nail your health and fitness goals without having to spend hours planning?
To reach any health and fitness goal you will need to adopt new habits. In the next section I have listed the most common habits that worked for me when I struggled to lose weight. These habits helped me reset my hormones and rebalance my blood sugar levels. This was key to me being able to control my own weight.
Don’t let this long list put you off. Just choose one or two to work on first and write them down where you will see them constantly. Eg a post-it note on your computer or phone? Start with the ones that you know will be easy for you. Once the habit is embedded, add in another one. Soon you will have worked your way through the whole list.
Consistency is key. If you consistently put the habit in place you are more likely to achieve your goals. If you break the habit one day because it is your birthday and you want to drink champagne and eat birthday cake then that should not make much of a difference to you achieving your goals. Unless the breaking of the habit becomes consistent!
The habits that can kick-start your journey to achieving your health and fitness goals
- No more than 3 meals a day and no snacks.
- Protein with every meal – eggs, chickpeas, lentils, fish, poultry, liver are good sources.
- Fibre every day – vegetables, beans, seeds, raw nuts are all full of fibre.
- Healthy fats every day – avocados, olive oil, oily fish, nuts, seeds.
- 5 portions of non-starchy vegetables a day, including 1-2 cups of leafy greens – broccoli, cauliflower, sprouts, kale, cabbage, rocket, spinach, pak choy, asparagus, peppers, courgettes, leeks, celery, cucumber.
- Probiotic foods – yoghurt, coconut yoghurt, kefir, Kimchi, sauerkraut.
- Reduce alcohol – have only on special occasions or 1-2 glasses per week
- Avoid sugar and processed foods – honey, any syrups, biscuits, cakes, granola bars
- Avoid refined carbs – white bread, pasta, rice
- Limit fruit to 1-2 portions a day – good choices are berries and citrus fruits
- Limit caffeine – 1-2 cups coffee a day.
- Keep total carbs low – 50-75g a day, better to get your carbs from vegetables rather than grains.
- 1-2 litres water a day.
- Walk outside every day for 30 mins – can be broken up into 3 sets of 10 mins. Eg get off the tube 2 stops earlier if you have time and walk the rest of the way.
- Lift medium to heavy weights 2-4 times a week.
- Do cardiovascular or high intensity interval training 2-3 times a week – this can be included in your weight sessions if time is an issue, work at your level eg you can do intervals of walking and fast walking if you have not exercised before.
Rest and Relaxation habits
- Sleep 7 – 8 hours a night.
- Do at least one fun activity a week – zumba can be fun and also ticks the cardiovascular fitness habit; meet up with friends.
- Do a relaxation activity at least once a week – eg yoga, pilates, meditation, massage, hot bath, sauna, reading.
If all this still sounds too daunting, I’d love to have a chat about how I might be able to help you plan and to support you to achieve your specific health and fitness goals. You can book a call with me here.
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