Tuesday, 16 September 2014


We decide to reform our eating habits - at least twice a year. Then we do make changes, we clear up the fridge and fill it up with celery and low-fat yoghurt, then after two weeks we find chocolate mousse and ready made pies in it again... Why?

We usually blame the circumstances: we are busy, we do not have the time, family comes first then work etc...
For me - as a mum - the following realisations were very helpful to put things into place.

1. Do it for the present and not for the future

Psychologically if you put the result of your present sacrifice into the far future, you feel you are suffering more. Consequentially you will give it up. Who loves suffering?
While you are exercising think of positive vibes, like
"I am strong, I can do it."
Or while having a big bowl of salad instead of pork belly with chips:
"I am in control, I am healthy - and actually this is delicious." - By the way a bowl of salad can be more delicious than you think...
Concentrate the enjoyable side of your health-conscious choice instead of thinking of what you miss from your old habit or feeling sorry for yourself.

2. Do it for your family and not for yourself

We women are prone to think that if we spend time exercising or concentrating on healthy meals and activities we are selfish. It is very not true. You have to be strong and healthy all the time as you are the pillar - one of the pillars of your family's life. On top of this you are the role model for your kids. You cannot be authentic teaching a healthy lifestyle from the armchair in front of the telly. The only way to teach them the love of physical activity, if yourself do the activities - sometimes with them. And keeping up with children assumes that you are in good physical condition. The same true for eating habits.

3. Changing your lifestyle is not an overnight miracle - step by step

Do not expect too much from only one decision. Lifestyle change is a process, not an overnight miracle. Do the changes step-by-step. If you have never been keen on vegetables, it is surely a failure to expect to eat only celery and carrot as a meal. You will not enjoy it and as a result you will give it up. First try to smuggle vegetables into your diet as sauces to your meat, then you can move to steamed vegetables added to your plate as side. Sometimes we just need to start learn the taste of vegetables again. After eating artificial additives, high-salt content ready made food our taste buds cannot enjoy the taste of real food. After my detox week I always re-discover the miracle of real tastes.
Anyway one step at the time - reduce salt in your food, concentrate on fluid intake, increase the amount of fruit and vegetables in your diet, reduce sugar in your diet. Every each step comes with changes in your daily routine (e.g. introducing small but regular meals into your day), probably new kitchen tools (like a juicer or steamer) etc. So take your time to establish your new habits.

4. Be patient and keep on tying

Things sometime do not turn out well first. That's okay. Be patient, and try it again. Remember, when we were kids trying was normal, but in the "adult world" we expect ourself to be perfect at the first attempt. It is okay to make mistakes, it is okay to be imperfect. If your goals are realistic, you will be able to reach them sooner or later - just keep trying.

5. Stay positive -do not focus on negative side, choose to think positively

Positive thinking help you to get over even the hardest situation. I give you an example. I have a 45 minutes running routine and at about the 25th minutes I feel tired. So I start thinking of the tiredness and the pain, I feel some kind of crunch in my ankle, and my feet are getting heavier. So I am just about to stop running. But I choose not to concentrate on these. Indeed, I start a kind of self celebration saying to myself, yes, I am a hero, I am strong, and I feel my waist getting slimmer. And then I find my pace again, and I start enjoying that I have a strong body which I can rely on. From this point I just take it as fun.

6. Celebrate your achievements

It does not matter how small is this achievement, celebrate it. At least talk about it and be happy with your achievement. Whatever it is, this is the result of your hard work, so yes, you have deserved some kind of celebration. Probably it is not a good idea to use food as reward. (For instance a nice big ice cream is not the best way to reward yourself for cutting down sugar in your diet... except if this ice cream is super healthy :-)) But you can reward yourself with a nice candle lighted bath or a happy walk with your friend in the park or a lovely handbag... or whatever makes you happy.

7. Look for support

 If you have family you are unable to change your lifestyle without changing - more or less - their lifestyle too. So it is really important to engage in family, kids are so open-minded for changes by their natural curiosity, make them your ally. If they see, healthy lifestyle means that the family spends more time together - they will not mind if it happens on the football pitch instead of sitting front of the telly, - they are happy. You can also find allies in mums around you who are in similar life situation. Friends, chat room buddies - are also big help to get over difficulties on your way towards healthy life.

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