By Justinne Lou Go, RND
IN LAST week’s article of this column, I talked about the changes and challenges one can expect as he/she embarks on his/her healthy lifestyle journey. As mentioned, identifying and being aware of the changes and challenges involved is the first step to overcoming them. The challenges can be found everywhere, and even if you may have a friend you’re accountable to, at the end of the day, it’s a lone battle of will and wit between yourself and the world around you. The moment you wake up and step out of your door, the battle begins. Just as a soldier cannot go to battle without his gun, one must not go unarmed.
Here are some weapons against health destruction that will keep you from losing yourself to the antagonists of your noble journey:
The Warrior Mindset and Character
First things first, it all starts in the mind. One needs to equip the mind before other things because it’s the mind that keeps us going, just as the mind is what keeps a runner running the marathon. It’s called mindset, because you have to set your mind on something and that something is commitment — to loving yourself and fighting for what’s right for you, not allowing anything or anyone to get in the way of your health goals.
Before committing to anyone else, you must commit to yourself. Once you’re dead-set on your commitment to your better self (health-wise), you will need two more weapons: discipline and positivity.
Discipline is the inseparable partner of commitment if you want something to happen and get going. Discipline is what keeps you consistent to your goals and vision. This is what makes athletes into champions.
If discipline is the food that fuels one to make action, positivity is the accompanying essential refreshment that keeps one from burning out. You need to be your own cheerleader especially when no one else is. This is when “fitspirations” help, whether your own photo of your past fit self or just making time to do things you love.
The Game plan: Defense and Offense
Knowledge is futile without action and practice. So, once you’ve settled your mind, it’s time to make a game plan to strategize what to do and when to do things. When it comes to problems or challenges, anticipation is key to staying ahead of the game.
On the defense, you can equip yourself with healthy options. Mobile apps like Zomato help us in making better food choices by giving us a preview of a restaurant’s menu ahead of time. This definitely comes most handy when eating out with friends or family. We can select our meal choices without giving others the hassle of having to adjust to our food preferences.
At home, as mentioned in my previous article (“Setting Up Your Healthy Homebase”) a few weeks ago, you can make sure to stock up on whole, fresh food so you have a safe haven where anything you eat at home is good for you.
Another pro tip to work on your portioning skills when you eat out is to practice using measuring cups to measure out your food portions on your plate. Doing this will help train your eyes to estimate a good serving portion when you’re eating out, without looking like a dork.
On the offense, you can bring healthy food with you, particularly snacks. Make sure to pack some nuts and sliced fruits so whenever you get hungry, you don’t grab for whatever you see around you.
If you need someone to help equip you with the knowledge and strategies to jumpstart your healthy lifestyle, you can always get in touch with me via Facebook, Instagram or e-mail, or any Registered Nutritionist-Dietitian you might know. Having someone to guide you and cheer you along will definitely help keep you on track with your health goals.