For many of us, the new year is an opportunity for a restart. We make resolutions, set goals, pick a meaningful word for the year, or even if we don’t name the change out loud, we secretly tell ourselves that this year will be different. But what happens when the change stalls or the cleanse you were doing is over or you fall off of your diet or exercise wagon?
Hitting this wall often happens towards the end of January or the beginning of February—when our momentum has dissipated and real life has been in full swing for a while. It can be disheartening, but don’t let it get you down! First of all, you are not alone—many people are experiencing exactly the same thing right now. Secondly, big changes often come in fits and starts; it is how you handle those ebbs and flows that matters.
When I used to work as a health and cooking coach, I would often talk to my clients about the importance of baby steps. If instead of taking on a big issue all at once, we break it down into small, achievable steps, we are more likely to find lasting success and change.
Simple Ways to Make Healthier Eating Possible
So, if your hopes for this year include a having a healthier lifestyle, eating better, losing weight, or cooking more, here are some ideas for baby steps that can help you have a successful journey:
Have fruits or vegetables with every meal.
While this may seem like an obvious step, when you actually take a look at what you normally eat, you may be surprised by how many meals don’t include a fruit or vegetable, especially snacks. By using this simple rule consistently, you will be giving your body more of what it needs on a regular basis.
Drink more water.
This is one that I struggle with, but over time have gotten better at. Staying hydrated is not only really good for your body, but it also will help you to distinguish between true hunger and low-level dehydration (which also feels like hunger). Some useful steps here include, setting a reminder on your phone to drink water at regular intervals throughout the day and flavoring your water with fruit to make it just a little more interesting without adding sugar.
Food at home is almost always going to be healthier (and cheaper) than food you buy out. Bringing lunch to work, eating one more homemade meal a week, prepping on the weekend to make cooking easier during the week, and making extras of a recipe or an extra main course that can be used for lunches are all ways to help make this happen.
Get more sleep.
When you are tired, you are more likely to make poor food choices, so getting more sleep can make a huge difference to your food intake, plus who doesn’t want more time to rest?!
Plan your meals.
This one can feel like a really big step, so use The Scramble’s online meal planning service to eliminate all the guess-work and stress. The Scramble is full of recipes you can be sure are healthy and simple to prepare. Sign up for a two-week free trial now and let us do the work for you.
Have you found simple actions you can take to make life just a little healthier and happier? I’d love to hear about them in the comments!