Stop waiting for Monday, January 1st, or anything else. Start now! Living a healthy lifestyle is so important for your mental, physical, and emotional health. Whether it’s exercising 3 times a week or choosing the healthier option on the menu, small actions can make a huge difference. Not to say that the media doesn’t largely influence how we perceive our bodies; we think we’re made of numbers and percentages but we’re not! We’re made of happiness, memories, love, friendships, and past experiences. We have more substance than numbers and understanding that is the first step to leading a healthy lifestyle!
Ally is a friend of S&J’s who has taught herself to live a healthy lifestyle and love her body, and she now shares her knowledge by helping others as a personal trainer. We asked her for some advice on eating healthy and taking care of your body. Read below on her fitness tips and be sure to check her out on Instagram @allyfitfreak for more information.
“There’s nothing better than acquiring a healthier lifestyle, diet, and physique.
I am personal trainer here at the University of Florida, and it’s been one of the best and most rewarding things I could have done in my life. I go to the gym six times a week, which can be a bit time consuming for those of us balancing work, school, and a healthy social life. Luckily, you can absolutely achieve your goal by working out and being active three to four times a week. Starting the gym can be quite intimidating at first, I recommend either getting a coach or going with a friend who is comfortable in that setting, in order to guide you. When I started working out, I watched tons and tons of YouTube videos in order to learn proper form and feel more comfortable about my routine. Don’t be afraid to lift weights, in order to tone up your muscles and burn extra calories. Incorporating cardio is essential to not only a healthier heart and mind, but in increasing fat loss. I would recommend starting off with two days of working out and two days of cardio each week. Make sure to rest in between, in order to let your muscles rest and rebuild.
Abs are made in the kitchen! (Literally). For those of us who love sweets and fatty foods it is an ongoing battle. Luckily, there are plenty of tricks and habits you can adapt within your lifestyle in order to not only stay away from unhealthy foods, but actually avoid craving it. I am a strong believer of the fact that diets and restrictions will not help in long term results. We must stop the problem at it’s source, in order to truly feel great about the choices we are making on a daily basis. And that is simply becoming a healthier individual; learning to love clean foods, waking up each day feeling energized, and satisfied. Substances such as processed sugar is extremely addictive, it often times tricks your brain into thinking you’re craving one of those double chocolate brownies when in fact, you most likely are simply dehydrated. These couple of tricks have helped my clients and myself keep a healthier lifestyle all year round.
Drink plenty of water, although this can be hard at first, some individuals found it extremely helpful to set alarms on their phones to remind themselves in the beginning, and help develop this habit. I personally found carrying a gallon around most helpful, it helped me remember to drink throughout the day, and the fuller it was, the heavier! Drinking water keeps you feeling full, hydrates your brain, keeps your skin clear, and gives you healthy hair. Talk about a miracle worker!
Avoid any sauces, learn to cook with clean ingredients such as lemon juice and herbs. I implemented lemon into my diet in every form; I put it in my water, cook with it, even use it cosmetically.
Adjust your sleeping schedule, go to sleep earlier in order to avoid late night snack eating and avoid over eating the next day due to fatigue. You’d be surprised how much a goodnight sleep affects your diet!
Last but not least, learn to love your body. Realize this is a life change, which needs patience, persistence, and acceptance. Stay motivated and keep track of your progress in order to see how far you’ve come!”