Approaching the New Year, it always seems like so many people want to make some ridiculous commitment to a new diet or a weight loss goal. Inevitably most people will fail or (even worse) possibly achieve some level of success then immediately revert back to the same old habits that were not making them happy to begin with.
Are you about to make that resolution? Stop yourself right now. Don’t bother proclaiming some unobtainable weightloss goal or ridiculous excersise regimen that you know you will only follow for two weeks then be totally burned out on.
As human beings, we acknowledge that old habits die hard and forming new habits is even harder. To try to completely turn your world upside down overnight and jump into a drastic change in diet or exercise will end in tears for most people. Instead I propose that you commit to a small change. Something that will reap great rewards while simultaneously moving you in the right direction and opening the door for more small changes over time. Here are my top three (virtually painless) baby steps that you can take to make a change and make a transition to a Paleo or Primal diet (or any diet for that matter) much easier without going all-in from the start.
1. Eliminate Soda From Your Day
Coke, Pepsi, Sprite, etc. are the biggest contributors to obesity, high blood sugar, and too many other negatives to get into here. Eliminating even one soda from your daily routine will help you feel better and let your body begin functioning as it should. I’m also talking about removing diet sodas from your diet. Their detrimental effects are also significant.
Try replacing every soda with unsweetened iced tea or water. You will be surprised how much better your meal tastes and how much better you feel. If you really hate water or tea, try adding citrus to your water. Try a wedge of lime or orange instead of lemon for something different. Use soda water to add some carbonation without the sweetness. Try some different teas from the grocery store or specialty shop to find something you like, hot or cold. If you have to have some added sweetness, avoid artificial sweeteners and sparingly add in some honey or real maple syrup. Be creative and find things you love.
2. Buy Fresh Fruit
Make it a habit to buy fresh fruit every time you shop. This habit alone will make fruit available in your home at all times. You will find that when you have fresh fruit readily available and easily accessible, you will be more likely to eat it every day. The natural sugars in fruit are what your body was designed to process efficiently and the natural fiber will keep you feeling full longer. Apples and grapes are easy to grab and pack well for work or school. If you can replace at least one crappy snack a day with fruit, you are establishing a great life habit for you and your family.
This is the most painless way to consume calories that I can think of. Challenge yourself to park your car as far away from the grocery store entrance as possible. Park at the outer reaches of your work parking lot. Anywhere you go, provide yourself the opportunity to walk some extra steps. Take the stairs and avoid escalators and elevators. Avoid using handrails as much as you can to help focus the use of your legs and increase core stability. You would be surprised how much this alone will help you feel better and reduce back pain by strengthening your large leg and core muscles.
Resolve to Make Small Resolutions This Year
These three steps will not rock your world, but they will make you feel better and you will see a change in how you look and feel over time. More importantly, they begin to change your habits which makes it a lot easier to take on bigger changes later on. Don’t commit to becoming a Crossfit rock star or Paleo evangelist at the strike of 12 on New Year’s Eve. Quietly commit to these small changes and take more profound steps as they feel right to you.
Happy New Year!
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