I don’t believe in dieting. There, I said it. I just don’t. Why you may ask? Simple, they don’t work and I say so with a great deal of confidence after struggling with my weight for years and talking to more doctors then I have fingers. They don’t work because they are a short term solution to what many of us find to be a long term concern. Meaning, we change our habits for a period of time, drop some weight, and then return to our “normal” state of living and everything goes back to the way it was before the diet began and often times, even worse.
After years and years of trial and error, successes and failures, I gave up on the idea of dieting all together. Now I live in a state of maintenance. I work on making choices that will improve my overall life and livelihood and I keep in mind that I am human. In other words, I strive to be the best me that I am able to be every day and understand that some days will be better than others. This seems to work for me. I don’t feel deprived, I don’t beat myself up when I make a “mistake,” I don’t feel guilt for eating something “bad” and I live my life focusing on things other than my weight; like I have so many years before. Again, this is what works for me. It may not work for you but … if you are open to trying new things … why not give it a try? Are you planning for the New Year? Are you working up a list of resolutions? Perhaps this could be one of yours.
Are you ready to find a new you just in time for a new year? Here are a few tips heading into January!
5 Steps to a Healthy YOU
1) DRINK MORE WATER. I know a lot of people aren’t huge fans of water because they aren’t a huge fan of the taste. I’m one of those people! However, the benefits of drinking water outweigh the negatives of not. I go through spurts of time when I don’t drink a lot of water and I pay for it dearly. My body feels different, sometimes it even hurts, I don’t feel as well, my skin doesn’t look as good, and I notice that I tend to hold weight. By drinking water, I am doing what I can to keep my body cleansed, hydrated, and happy and all of that sounds fantastic to me! Not a big fan of the taste? No problem! There are enhancers on the market that add to the taste without adding calories. There are also infusers! Infusers grant you the ability to have complete control over the flavors and ingredients going into what you are putting into your body; and they are often cheaper than store bought. Drinking water makes me feel healthier which in turn makes me feel younger. It also works wonders on one’s skin! Seriously, have you noticed the difference between your skin when you drink a lot of water vs. not? Next time you go on a no H20 binge for a while, look in the mirror, you’ll see the difference.
2) CHOOSE CHOICE. As I mentioned above, I don’t believe in dieting but I do believe in making better choices. When I am packing my lunch for the day, I toss a piece of fruit or yogurt into my bag instead of a bag of chips. If I want a sweet treat, I grab a couple of snack-size candy bars instead of sitting down with a full size bar or a bag of candy. To be honest, these aren’t big choices for me based on what I like. Where I run into situations where I have to make big decisions is my proteins. You see, our family tends to focus on a high protein lifestyle. The problem is, not all proteins are created equal so it’s important to focus on leaner meats over fattier choices. One way that I do that is substituting turkey where I can; meaning in place of beef and pork whenever possible! So far it has worked for me and can for you as well. I mean, don’t get me wrong, everyone notices that there is something different, the flavor profile has changes, but to date (knock on wood) nobody has complained and I don’t anticipate that changing. Take breakfast for example. It’s a busy time, especially during the week. Sometimes I pop a couple Johsonville Fully Cooked Breakfast Sausage into the microwave and serve them to my daughter with a slice of toast (more like half) with a little peanut butter. She is a picky eater so I try not to alter her “diet” a great deal. These are items that she likes and they allow me to get protein into her system and that is what I really care about. However, in January, we are going to try to implement some new changes. She likes turkey and eats it in different recipes such as spaghetti, meatloaf, hamburgers; the list goes on and on. Now we are going to add it to her weekday morning routine! I’m thinking a couple sausage TURKEY links and a yogurt or perhaps some strawberries. By incorporating Johnsonville Fully Cooked Sausage TURKEY links she’ll be taking in 70% less fat vs. pork sausage. Two links will give her 8g of protein and they contain no fillers or MSG. I’ll be able to provide her with a flavorful protein solution that is convenient (moms of the world say THANKS!) without cutting corners on quality; quality that can be seen courtesy of turkey sausage’s clear packaging. There will be days when we can still do toast with peanut butter or even an egg on the side but for a quick breakfast for busy families on the go this will be PERFECT!
Johnsonville Fully Cooked Breakfast Links come in 3 flavors, and each pack comes with 12 links. Learn more at http://bit.ly/1MNzZJ6
Are you interested in trying Johnsonville Fully Cooked Turkey Sausage? Pick up a package or two at Walmart stores nationwide. For additional listings, use Johnsonville’s “Where to Buy” link on Johnsonville.com at the bottom of the website.
3) TAKE UP A HOBBY. For most, if not all of us, stress is a major part of our lives. We are constantly on the go, we have deadlines, the kids have to be here and there, cook dinner, clean the house, do laundry, and pay the bills. Oh, did I mention work, work, work! It seems as though there is something always going on; especially around the holidays. January is the perfect time to regroup, reorganize, and reprioritize. While you are doing that, why not schedule in some time for you? We all need a little me time in our lives, for our sanity, and a great way to get that time is finding a hobby. The neat thing about a hobby is that it can be ANYTHING and it’s just for you. You don’t have to answer to anyone, impress anyone, and there isn’t a right or wrong way to do it. Do you enjoy writing? Why not take up journaling or maybe writing a book of short stories. Are you on the crafty side? Why not draw, scrapbook, or redesign a room in your home. For me, I like to coupon. I like the thrill of finding the deals and saving money. It allows me to introduce products into my home at a lower cost and I even find products for free or pennies and I am able to donate them and that makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside! Anyway, that is enough about me. The idea is to find your “thing,” set aside a little time for yourself, and de-stress.
4) EXERCISE. Wait, don’t shut the page! Seriously, just hear me out. I totally hate when this comes up in articles too. But, I look it at a little different than a lot of other people do. When I say EXERCISE, I don’t mean run out and get a gym membership, workout clothes, and a personal trainer. Okay, let me rephrase, if you want to that, by all means … get goin! As for me, that isn’t realistic. I have a full-time job (well exceeding 40 hours a week), a home, a family, pets, and a life. I currently live in a household that is down to one car because someone totaled my husband’s car; a couple of months after we finished paying it off. I also like to sleep. I haven’t figure out where or how to factor gym time into my life but what I can factor in is going for a walk; either alone, with my family, with my pups, or a mixture of all involved. I can play soccer with my daughter in the yard and run around like a crazy person. I can lift the weights that my husband likes to store in the basement (hehe, love you honey). Or I break out Just Dance, pop it in the WiiU, and rock out. My doctor has always told me the idea is to MOVE. Just move. Do something different, get my heartrate up, and MOVE. This may not work for everyone but it works for me and my life, at least for now. My goal is to do more than I would have done had I not added the activity in. As a bonus, I am factoring in things that I like to do and that makes it a lot easier to stick with.
5) LIVE LIFE! I live life with the understanding that this is a once in a lifetime experience (haha, see what I did there!)! What I mean is nobody is able to predict the future. We don’t know when our time will come and I don’t want to live my life worrying about it or thinking about it. I’ve been there and done that and it gained me absolutely nothing other than fear and heartache. We all go through phases in our lives where we question things, we lose those we love, and life happens, but the reality of the situation is, we have no control over tomorrow. I know that we all have our “thing” or perhaps “things” in life that we focus on or have a difficult time getting past. For me, it is my weight. It has always been the one thing about me that I don’t like. In fact, it is the one thing about me that I hate and that can have some rather negative influences on an individual’s life. It’s difficult to love yourself and be happy when something that is visible for the world to see is what you hate about yourself. At times I have allowed it to control my thoughts, my feelings, my actions, my reactions. NO MORE! I want to run around, yell, laugh, and have fun with my daughter. I want to dress “sexy” and go on romantic dates with my husband. I want to go shopping for new clothes just because and not come home crying. I am working on a new journey where I remember to live and I hope that you will join me. There is enough bad in the world that certainly my two cents of negativity aren’t needed. Instead, I want to smile. I want my daughter to grow up with memories of a mommy that is happy and full of love and if I’m not that person, how can I expect her to retain such thoughts? I’m going to work on being happy with me, the person that I see in the mirror, every day. I am going to accept that it is okay to make healthy decisions most of the time but indulge in the sweet stuff in life some of the time. I am going to try to live as though this day may be my last because it may and I want my family to remember all the good times we had, the love that we shared, and a dazzling smile that was real.
I invite you to join me in taking the steps to being a healthy YOU in 2016. What step will you be taking to start the process?
Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post written in conjunction with Johnsonville® and a campaign with Sverve. Regardless, all opinions expressed are still 100% my own.