February 19, 2016

5 Things to Do Before You Start a Diet Or Exercise Plan

Sorry I haven’t posted anything in over a week! Some crazy and unexpected things have been going on over  here in the Evans family, and I am just getting back into the swing of things. I am loving this warm weather today though! Having the sun shine through my bedroom window gives me a lot more energy to do work instead of wanting to curl into bed and take a nap 😉

I want to make it really easy for people to get started on their health journey. I call it a health journey, instead of a diet, because making healthy changes really should be a lifestyle change rather than a temporary weight-loss goal. Once you view it that way, you will always make healthy choices and it will become part of your daily life-you won’t even think twice about making healthy choices. I am going to be sharing my daily workouts, which will consist of at-home workouts, no-equipment workouts, equipment workouts, and crossfit workouts, so that there are lots of options for everyone. I will also be posting my weekly and daily meal plans to make healthy choices even easier!

Before you start your health journey, here is a list of things that will help you tremendously to be prepared to make changes and commit to your goals:

  1. Write down your goals and your motivation to follow through. It is almost impossible to change your eating habits without writing down your goals. Make that commitment! Write down exactly what your goals are and how you plan to achieve them. Write down your motivation to help you accomplish them. Maybe you are planning a cruise over the summer, maybe you want to have more energy throughout the day, or maybe you have health problems that are motivating you to live a healthier lifestyle.
  2. Get rid of all junk food. Okay, I have to put this meme in here: funnyI am totally guilty of doing that! Just one more day of eating sweets, and tomorrow I will eat perfectly! Don’t do this! I know from experience that your sugar cravings the next day are only going to intensify. Just throw it all away!
  3. Make a meal plan. I have to plan out all of my meals for the entire week. I do this so that I know I am eating the exact amount of calories and nutrition that I need each day- giving me no excuses to cheat. I also do this so that I can make a grocery list and have all of my food that I need on hand. I recommend the MyFitness Pal app. This is a free app that allows you to put all of your food in for the day, and it keeps track of your calories, vitamins, and macronutrients. You can enter in your own recipes or look up any grocery item, and it has all of the nutrients listed for you. This app makes planning your meals and fitting your macros a breeze. Soon I will be posting my meal plan each week, with all of the calories and macronutrients already balanced to help make it super easy for people who don’t want to do it on their own. You can modify the calories to your specific needs.
  4. Along with making your meal plan, figure out what diet is going to work for you in the long run. Obviously it is not realistic to say you are never going to have a treat again. Make a plan that allows you to eat healthy most of the time, but still leaves room for you to enjoy life! There are several options to consider. It is important to figure out what is going to work best for you. One option is 80/20 lifestyle. Eat healthy 80% of the time; cheat 20% of the time. This could mean that you have one small treat a day, or one cheat day a week. Another option is the If It Fits Your Macros (IIFYM) diet. With this one, you have to have an app or some way of looking at your macros. Your macronutrients are fats, proteins, and carbs. Ideally, your protein should be 35-40% of your daily calories, carbohydrates should be 40-45%, and fats should be 20-25%. I prefer this method of healthy eating over others because you know that your body is getting all of the nutrients that it needs. It takes more work however, to do all of the math and get your meals perfectly balanced. Some people like IIFYM because it allows them to plan to have a treat each day and fit it on their macros, hence “if it fits your macros.” I don’t like to eat a treat everyday because I have horrible self-control, and when I eat one treat, my mind thinks that I can eat whatever I want for the rest of the day! So, I prefer to follow the IIFYM  throughout the week just to be sure I’m getting all of my nutrients, and maybe have a cheat meal on the weekend.
  5. Make an exercise plan. Put what time you are going to work out, and what you are going to do on a calendar. I have noticed that when I schedule my workout time, I am a lot more likely to follow through. If I just say, “I will workout when I have time tomorrow,” it almost never happens because the end of the day comes around, and I tell myself I am too tired. I usually try to workout in the morning before my kids go to sleep, which requires me to go to bed early, so if I am planning on working out at  5:30 the next morning, I know I will go to sleep earlier the night before. I am also going to share my workouts for the week each week to give you some awesome ideas for workouts that you can do at-home or at the gym.

Sometimes I think it can be hard to get started, but all you really need to do is make a goal and commit! Just remember your reasons for wanting to create a healthy lifestyle, and use this as your daily motivation. Remember, a year from now you will wish you had started today! I am definitely wishing that right now as I am 10 months post-partum and still haven’t lost my baby weight! I am not going to let that bring me down though, I am going to continue eating healthy and working out every day because I know it will make me feel better about myself, have more energy, and improve my overall health. I hope this helps you get started! Keep following to make it really easy for you to get your daily workouts in and daily healthy meal plans.

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