Are you like millions of Americans who are finding that their clothes are a little tighter and harder to zip? Are you avoiding getting on the scale? Truth is, I'm in the same boat and was cringing when a friend posted some photos on social media. OMG, where did that added roll come from?!
Look, I can resist a lot of things, but not homemade cookies, which is why I'm hitting the gym and getting back into my healthier routines. I'm all about being optimistic and using motivation, so instead of beating myself up, I'm starting by repeating some positive affirmations that I have adapted after reading Louise Hay's book, You Can Heal Your Life.
At first, repeating affirmations may seem a little odd, but as you practice saying them, your brain catches on and helps reinforce your healthy behaviors.
Here are two to get you started:
I like making healthy, nutritious choices when it comes to my meals.
I enjoy working out. It gets my heart pumping and boosts my energy for the whole day.
Next, find your own motivation.
Ask yourself what motivates you to be healthier or lose weight. Better yet, write it down. Don't edit yourself and do be honest, because it works better that way, even if it's something superficial and vain, like: I want to look better for my class reunion.
I want to look better in photos.
I want to be able to put on a swimsuit without using heavy equipment to pull it up.
I want to be able to see my toes when I stand up straight and look down.
I want to be able to walk without becoming short of breath.
I want to go on a bike ride with my kids.
I want to get my blood pressure or blood glucose values into a normal range.
What's your motivation? Let us hear from you in the comments below.
Here are more tried and true, time-tested tips that don't cost a cent:
Aim for one to three positive changes every three to seven days. For example: I'll try to get 1,000 extra steps every day this week; I'll cut my alcohol intake in half; and I'll eat a salad for lunch at least three times this week.
Start now! There's no time like the present.
Decide what you'll order before you go out. By scanning the menu online before you go to a restaurant, you can eliminate a lot of on-the-fly-I-need-to-treat-myself with food decisions.
This blog originally appeared on Nurse Barb's Daily Dose. Barb Dehn is a women's health nurse practitioner, award-winning author and nationally recognized health expert. She practices with Women Physicians in the Silicon Valley of California.