Categories
Goals Health and Wellness Self-care Stress Relief

Start Your Day Off Well

Whether you consider yourself a morning person or a night person, how you start your day often determines the outcome of it. From health to mindset to productivity, here are some tips to start your day off well.

  1. Get up! As soon as that alarm goes off, get out of bed! Don’t hit the snooze alarm. By training yourself to get up with the first alarm, you will actually be more rested and ready to go. You’ll also feel better about yourself and start the day with a positive mindset.
  2. Open the blinds and make your bed! As soon as you are up, let in the morning light! (If it’s winter and still dark out, you can wait — no need to flash your neighbors in the early morning.) Then make your bed. Why make your bed? Multiple reasons:
    • You have already accomplished one thing for the day!
    • This leads to a better self-perception, lowers your stress, and increases a positive mood.
    • It helps you keep the rest of your room tidy…
    • As well as your life — it increases productivity!
    • It will help you fall asleep at night. Getting into a bed that has been made actually helps your to relax better and get to sleep faster.
    • It’ll also keep you from crawling back into bed when you need to be up and going. 😉
  3. Drink a glass of warm lemon water. Squeeze half a lemon into 8oz of warm (not hot) water. Benefits of lemon water in the morning:
    • Boosts your immune system
    • Aids in digestion
    • Helps with weight loss
    • Balances pH
    • Clears skin
    • Freshens breath
    • Relieves respiratory problems
    • Helps you kick the coffee habit
  4. Spend 15 minutes in prayer and/or meditation. You can also spend the time reading an inspirational or motivational book. This allows you to prepare your heart and put your head in the right mindset for the day.
  5. Move your body. Spend 30 minutes doing some sort of movement. It doesn’t have to been an intense workout. A brisk walk is fine. Moving your body helps wake you up and gets the blood flowing to your brain, making you more productive and ready to conquer the day. Moving your body can be fun! Need ideas, let me know. 🙂
  6. Shower. Other than the fact that it’s good hygiene (especially after you workout), with so many people still working remotely, it’s important to mention. Take your shower, do your hair, put on makeup, and put on real clothes. Why? You will both feel better about yourself and be in the mindset that you are working and need to get things done.

Start with one thing above and add it to your morning routine until you are doing all of them! You will see a change in your mindset and outlook for the day. And remember…one bad thing doesn’t set the tone for the day. You can turn a bad day into a good one with a positive mindset!

Categories
Goals Health and Wellness

You Don’t Have to Be The Best

I’m a recovering competitor and perfectionist…two things that don’t always go well together. 

I’ve always been an athlete and was above average in most sports growing up. However, because I’m so competitive, all I could see was everyone who was better than me. And because I was a perfectionist, I aligned that with never thinking I was good enough. In my mind, if I wasn’t the best, I clearly wasn’t a good player. At that time, I didn’t realize that was my thinking pattern…I just never really saw my talent. But looking back now, I see how it all connected. 

My dad was a constant encouragement to me and would tell me all the time what a great player I was (while also being honest about where I could improve), but it never made a difference. I simply didn’t believe I was as good as he (or the stats) said. And because of it, I gave up on my favorite sport when I was 15 and later wished I could go back and make a different decision.

Perhaps you are a little bit that way as well…especially when it comes to wellness. You see the slim people in magazines and think that you would never be able to look that way, so why try? (As I say all the time, what’s on the outside doesn’t always reflect the health level on the inside…) Or you see people your age running marathons and you feel bad about your two mile walk and just want to give up. 

Here’s the truth in life…you will never be the best at ANYTHING. There will always be someone better than you. You don’t have to BE the best to succeed in life and reach your goals, but you owe it to yourself to always DO your best.

Let the people who are “better” than you inspire you, but don’t let it defeat you. Determine what your dreams and goals are and work toward them — independent of others dreams and successes. You are capable of great things!

I’m thankful that God has worked in my life and my perfectionist ways — that I am able to show myself grace and see the amazing ways that He has made me and all the gifts He has given me. I don’t want to be the best anymore — because then I have no where to grow.

Categories
Family Goals Health and Wellness

How to Vacation Well

Last week, my family and I escaped the artic chill and snow and headed to Florida! It was sunny with temperatures in the 80s all week — a huge difference from the weather back at home. We spent our time as Universal Studios Orlando (both parks) for five days and loved every moment of it. (As I sit here at home writing this blog post, it is 2 degrees outside and I can feel the winter blues descending…)

After a crazy (and oftentimes, disappointing) pandemic year, it was great to finally be able to vacation and spend time as a family. Yes, we had to wear masks the entire time (which is annoying when you are outside in warm weather), but because of the limited capacity, it wasn’t as crowded and the wait times were so much shorter! Woohoo!

For some people, when they go on vacation, they also see it as a vacation from living a healthy lifestyle. Here’s the thing, you can enjoy all the good things AND be healthy while vacationing…it just takes some planning and discipline.

Here are some tips for staying healthy while on vacation:
1. Focus on moving your body, not getting your best workout ever. 😉 For our trip, I got over 20,000 steps each day walking around the parks, so missing workouts wasn’t a big deal to me. 80% is nutrition and only 20% is exercise — so if I do well with my nutrition, than I’m fine. If you are planning a beach vacation, break up your day with some longer walks to keep your body moving.

2. Pack your supplements! The easiest way to keep your energy up and not get sick while on vacation is to TAKE YOUR SUPPLEMENTS! Vacation is not the time to leave them at home. 😉 I figure out what I need for the time I’m away and then put them all in a ziplock bag so I’m not bringing a bunch of bottles with me (you can also create a MyHealthPak which are pillow packs of vitamins — SUPER easy for travel). 

3. Plan out your dining options. I knew that our dinner would be our nice meal each day and when I would be eating good food, so I made a plan for during the day as we walked the park. I packed healthy low-glycemic snack bars and looked for healthy options at the park. Instead of getting a meal with fries, I would get a snack of hummus, carrots, celery, and pita bread (it was really filling and cost half as much as the meal!). I also made sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day. When it came time for dinner, I was able to enjoy some amazing food guilt-free. 

4. Take time to breathe, pray, read, etc. I made sure that I was up first each day so that I could have time to breathe and pray before heading out for the day. Some days were better than others, but it’s important to still care for yourself and your mental health.

I hope that this year will give you the opportunity to take a break and get a vacation or two. 🙂 And, hopefully, this tips will help you keep to your health and wellness goals when you go.

But most importantly…

Enjoy the trip and don’t beat yourself up if you eat a lot of junk! Just jump back on that wellness train when the vacation is over. (I’ll be here to help you!)

Categories
Family Goals Health and Wellness Marriage Parenting

What’s Your Word of the Year?

Since the beginning of 2021, I’ve been hearing a lot about having a “Word of the Year.” People have been choosing a “Word of the Year” prior to now, but I wonder if I’m seeing it more this year because people are afraid to have goals and dreams in 2021 after the letdown of 2020. 

It’s crazy to think that there is one word in all of language that will envelope my hopes for 2021 (check out this funny video from The Holderness Family: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uNZeZK7-4uU), but I think I came up with one. I still created my list of dreams for 2021, but tried to funnel it all into one word.

My word of the year is CARE. 

I picked this word because of the different ways it can be used.

“Take care…”

“Handle with care…”

“I care about you…”

I want to be more empathetic and show people that I care about their hurts/struggles. 

I want to make sure those closest to me know that I love them and make it a priority to tell them every single day that I care about them and that they matter. 

I want to grow how I take care of my aging parents and my family. I want to heal relationships by caring enough to listen and learn. 

At my job, I want my students to always know that they are valued and loved

In my business, I want my clients to know that I genuinely want to see them grow and succeed — that I care about their health and success. 

When the world gets crazy and out of control, I want to care about it more and not just compartmentalize. 

I want to care enough to be honest with people when I’ve been hurt instead of walking away.

As with any goals and dreams, I’m not going to beat myself up when I fail. My hope is that this word will resonate through my mind as I look at my daily to-do list, waver on returning a text, or find myself holding onto my hurt and anger…and that I will make a decision to show that I care.

How about you? Do you have a word that resonates with you and your dreams?

Categories
Goals Health and Wellness

Setting Your Goals

It’s a new year, which often means new goals and dreams. Most people come up with a resolution or goal, but often give up because it is unattainable or they are looking for quick results. There is nothing wrong with coming up with a list of goals for the new year…as long as you realize that it might take all year to attain them. Most won’t get achieved in one month — which means that you can’t give up after January if you haven’t met your goal AND you can’t wait to get started until November or December. Start right away with the knowledge that anything great worth doing is worth the time and effort.

It’s helpful to have smaller goals as you reach for your big goals (which I like to call my Dreams for the year). Dreams are the big picture, but you need multiple, smaller goals to reach your big goal/dream. So, you may have a big goal of losing 30lbs, but your smaller goals may be to lose 1-2 pounds per week, add one vegetable to your day, etc. You may want to get into an exercise routine again, but you can’t just go run five miles. Your smaller goal may be to do 10 minutes of movement per day for one week, etc. 

Another reason people fail to meet their goals is that they don’t know how to make goals. You need to make SMART goals.

Specific: Goals should be clear and state specifically what you wish to be accomplished.

Measurable: You need to be able to measure your goals so that you can see your progress.

Attainable: Goals should be realistically attainable.

Relevant: Goals need to be relevant to your particular needs, interests, and abilities.

Time-bound: Goals need to have a timeline for completion.

Your smaller goals may only be for a week or month, then once you meet that goal, you create a new one to move you toward ultimately completing your big goal. When I decided I wanted to stop eating chocolate every day and quit sugar 5+ years ago, my original goal was to go just one day without sugar! After I did the one day, my goal was one week. Then it was two weeks, then one month, etc. I started with a super small goal and then built on it.

There is a lot more I could write about how to set goals, but perhaps another time. 😉

2020 was a rough year, but don’t be afraid to dream big and make 2021 amazing! Just be sure to set those smaller SMART goals along the way to help you have success with your dreams.

And if you’re looking for assistance on any health goals, feel free to reach out to me! As a certified Health Coach and Group Fitness Instructor (with an M.A. in Exercise Physiology), if would be my delight and pleasure to work with you!