Tuesday, January 21, 2014

3 Fitness Tips for the New Year

Howdy folks!
It's 2014! I know, I guess I'm a little late to the party on that one seeing as it's almost February. We all know one of the most common resolutions people make for the new year is to get in shape or lose 5 lbs or eat less sugar, well, I decided I might be able to help a little bit. As we come to the end of January, I hope you won't lose your motivation. The key to getting in shape is to stay with it - make it part of your lifestyle.

Since I am a yoga instructor and it's part of my job to stay fit, I thought I'd share some little nuggets of wisdom I've gained over the last few years becoming a "fit person"

Do something active every day
It seems like a no-brainer, but for some people it can be a real struggle. I'm not even talking about big things. You don't need to go work your butt off in a gym for an hour every day to get fit. Start by going for a walk. Do you have a dog? Take them on a 20 minute walk. Try a 10-15 minute circuit before bed. Do some pushups. They are one of the few exercises that work your entire body. Maybe try some burpees. My hub's favorite used to be telling everyone to do calf raisers in the shower. Start with 20 and do more as you feel stronger. I'm pretty sure they're to credit with why my calves look how they do now. Other less "exercisy" things? Gardening. Rearrange furniture. Walk up and down the stairs 20 times.

Keep a food diary
I've actually been meaning to talk about this on my blog for a while. One of the most important things to remember is that you can't get in shape with just exercise. Diet is just as - if not more - important that exercise. Keeping a food diary will help you track what you're eating every day. If you look back at your diary at the end of each day and think "ugh, I shouldn't have eaten all that", then you know what you need to change for the next day. Also, if you're trying to lose weight and not noticing any change, look back at what you've been eating. It's easier to cut the calories from your diet if you're conscious and aware that you're consuming them in the first place.

Keep the processed stuff to a minimum
I know I've been posting a few too many cookie recipes to tell you to stop eating processed sugar, but we hear this everywhere. Processed food is just bad news. I'll be the first to admit that I don't eat organic, unprocessed everything all the time. I rarely read labels to check ingredients, and sometimes I just really want a cupcake. Most times, I prefer to make food for myself, so checking for processed ingredients isn't super important when all I'm buying is a bag of frozen chicken, some fresh veggies and a bottle of grape seed oil (higher smoke temp means fewer carcinogens), but when I do eat junk (pizza, beer, cookies, etc) I feel it the next day. My husband and I call it the "carb hangover", but really, it happens when we eat too much of anything "bad". Because I generally eat such a clean diet and can literally feel the difference when I'm eating processed foods, I know that this stuff is bad for me and was wearing me down. Before I changed my diet, I had so many more lethargic days. Now I want to go be active as often as possible because I have energy from the real food I'm eating.

Remember folks, a healthy body starts in the kitchen. Eat well, have energy, get fit. 

Have a happy and healthy 2014, y'all!

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