With 2012 drawing to a close, it’s that time of year when we’re trying to go in two different directions at once. On one hand we want to lose weight and look fab in our Christmas party dresses, while on the other hand we want to indulge and enjoy the parties, festivities and delicious once-a-year mince pies.
Firstly, enjoy yourself! Spend time with family and friends, accept all invitations and savour those special Christmas delights, washed down with a glass or two of bubbles! (All drinking in moderation of course) After all, there’s a whole year ahead to make the most of your physique…
If you’ve been unlucky enough to have been struck down with one of the many stomach bugs or cold and flu viruses going around then boosting your immune system is a priority. In between all those Christmas meals and sweet treats, ensure you’re eating these foods and drinks to boost vitality:
Eat two to three portions of fruit every day
Eat at least three portions of vegetables every day
Drink at least one litre of fresh water (ideally two litres)
Drink green tea to boost your metabolism
Cut down on milk and sugar in tea and coffee
Add a few drops of echinacea to your drinks 2-3 times a day
Take a 2 week course of milk thistle capsules which help to cleanse the liver
Take a 1 month course of probiotics (e.g. lactobacillus acidophilus) to repopulate the intestines with friendly bacteria (DO NOT take DURING a course of antibiotics, save them for afterwards)
Now, onto the New Year, New You…
Many people choose January 1st to start new fitness or diet programmes but sadly many fall by the wayside within a few short weeks without ever achieving their goals. How can you ensure this doesn’t happen to you? Here are a few tips:
Surround yourself with positive people. If you see your friends working hard to achieve their goals (any type of goal, not just weight orientated goals) then you’ll most likely be inspired by them.
Set yourself realistic goals. Losing 1-2lbs of fat a week is achievable, and more easily sustained over a longer period if you have a stone or more to lose.
Be thankful for what you have. Ok, so you may not be blessed with supermodel genetics (my ex-husband is still trying to find one of those!) and may not have a supportive family, much money or a full head of hair but you DO have lots to be proud of. Write a list of what others might say are your best features, both physical and emotional. If you find this too hard to do, then actually ask a few close friends or family members what they really do think.
Set a realistic exercise plan. It’s better to start with a daily 15 minute walk from your house than aiming to hit the gym 5 times a week at 6am! Look at your diary, your children’s activities and your husband’s work schedule and see where you can fit in some good quality exercise. In the new year I’ll post some home and gym-based workouts, but in the meantime, something as simple as 20 squats, 20 abdominal crunches and 20 three-quarter push ups done every day will have a toning effect and help you lose those inches. I had a client a few years back who added in squats at the bathroom sink every time she cleaned her teeth (twice a day) and another client who started doing some exercises in the play park while her toddler ran around.
If you really want to succeed, you will find a way.
The internet has exploded with blogs and articles linked to weight loss, healthy nutrition, positive living, better parenting and more. Make the most of these on your journey by following blogs via WordPress, BlogSpot, Facebook and more. Perhaps you fancy blogging about your own journey towards better health and happiness? Or maybe you’d rather keep it more personal and not share your details or photos with the world, in which case, buy a really nice notebook and take time and care to record your food, exercise, mood, weight, measurements and more. Add photos, sketches, comments, motivating words you’ve heard, compliments you’ve received and details of rewards for each goal you achieve.
Mobile phone applications are also incredibly popular. My favourite is MyFitnessPal which allows you to complete daily food diaries, store regular foods and meals, calculate nutritional information and calories and track your weight. You can also link to other friends and a whole online community, if you wish, making you accountable to others and enhancing your progress.
“If you have an hour, will you not improve that hour, instead of idling it away?”
For motivation and inspiration over the festive period, please come back to Mummyology regularly for more of my health, fitness and nutrition posts. (Even easier if you hit the Subscribe button!)
I wish you all a very merry Christmas and good health and happiness in 2013.
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