Staying healthy over the holidays, keeping up good eating habits, not falling off the wagon when it comes to exercise… To be able to stay on track, we have to BELIEVE we can do it. Let’s be honest, if we are not even sure it’s possible, what are the odds we will try, right?
Do you know what’s the best way to remind ourselves every single day that YES, we can stay healthy, and YES, we are that healthy person? It is to take one small action every single morning and use it as a proof. Yes! Healthy morning routines are the key to a healthy day and healthy holidays.[popup_trigger id=”2335″ tag=”button”]Follow this blog[/popup_trigger]
Start your day doing something (anything!) that will put you in the shoes of a healthy person for the rest of your day.
It can be as simple as drinking a large glass of water as soon as you set foot on the ground. It might be hard at first, but you will soon get to appreciate the feeling of awakening and purity that comes from drinking water first thing in the morning. And you will be less likely to eat unhealthy, greasy, or sweet processed food for breakfast, because you will want to prolong the beautiful feeling of clean insides.
You can take a 20-minute walk (before breakfast if possible!), or stretch for 15 minutes, or do a solo workout in your bedroom for 10 minutes, or go up and down your condo stairs for 5 minutes. All those actions won’t take much time and will put you in the mindset of a healthy person. If not for the rest of the day, at least for the next hour or so, which will help you make more healthy decisions, one thing leading to another. Yes, there is a snowball effect to this!
If time is a real struggle for you, skip the extra physical activity, but make sure your breakfast is as healthy as can be. Not only will it give you energy for hours, but it will also remind you very early on that you ARE a healthy person, and can be the entire day.[popup_trigger id=”2335″ tag=”button”]Follow this blog[/popup_trigger]
Your “healthy morning action” should be easy and enjoyable enough that you don’t dread it. You might not look forward to it (at least not at first!), but it should not require much willpower. Because you want to do this EVERY SINGLE DAY. So make it short, easy, and sustainable.
It should still be some kind of effort though! Not a tough battle like showing up at boot camp class or spending an hour cooking a 5-star vegan breakfast. But you want to make sure that the achievement feels just good enough that you don’t want to ruin it within the next hour. That’s the secret to success! If you have to push yourself a bit to do some yoga for 15 minutes, will you want to gobble up 4 waffles covered in syrup right after? Most likely not. Otherwise, you would have done yoga pretty much for nothing.
You have to find the right activity and the right level of difficulty. Why not start today and experiment with different things? I suggest that you think about what you are going to do tomorrow morning! Write it down and start experimenting. Try it until the end of the week and see how it works. Check off on your calendar every day you successfully complete your activity. If you are not happy with an action or can’t do it every day, find something else. Keep experimenting until you find the short activity that will make you FEEL healthy.
This little tweak in your day will make a big difference in your holidays, and it won’t stop there, believe me![popup_trigger id=”2335″ tag=”button”]Follow this blog[/popup_trigger]
If you want more tips like this before the holidays, you should like my Facebook Page. You can also follow me on Instagram. And if you think this article can be helpful to someone you know, please share! Together, we are healthier 🙂
As always, if you feel that you need a bit of extra help figuring out what to do and how to do it, contact me or make an appointment for a FREE 20-minute consultation. I’ll be happy to chat with you and see how you can stack all the odds in your favor. Allons-y! Let’s Go![popup_trigger id=”2335″ tag=”button”]Follow this blog[/popup_trigger]
©2017 Allons-y Coaching, LLC – Seattle, WA – All rights in all media reserved.
Did you know that elevators and escalators kill about 30 people each year in the US, according to data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Consumer Product Safety Commission? OK, agreed, if you look closer, half of those deaths (but only half!) involve people who WORK near or in elevators. I am not saying they don’t count of course, but I guess you were thinking “passengers” when you started reading this, so I kind of mislead you. My apologies. Still, check out the numbers! It’s pretty scary. I am never riding an elevator again!
Anyway, it is true that even without considering incidents, elevators are killers. I love them for the freedom and autonomy they provide to people with reduced mobility. Yet on the other hand, I also hate them. Because they keep the rest of us from doing one of the best exercise for our body: climbing stairs.
Let me ask you: have you been in a gym lately? Have you seen how many stair mills and elliptical machines are present in the cardio room? Why do you think that is? If you Google “best cardio machines”, you’ll see that the stair mill comes up in pretty much every search result.
Many of us sign up at the gym and try to make room in our super busy schedule to fit in 30 minutes of cardio 3 times per week… Because, hey, we gotta be active right? But what about those stairs at work? In our apartment building? At the doctor’s clinic? Or the stairs to the hotel room or in the park?
There are stairs everywhere and here is why you SHOULD use them, unless you have a condition that keeps you from doing so (talk to your doctor, please!).
It’s pretty simple. Where ever you go, START WITH THE STAIRS FIRST! Always!!! I am not telling you to necessarily go all the way up. But when you are in a lobby or parking garage, find the stairs and start climbing. When you are too tired, or too sweaty, or too bored, or whatever, find the elevator and finish with it. But always take the stairs first, and see how far you can go. The following times, try to go one floor higher. If there are 20 floors, take the stairs, even if you know you will only go up 3 flights and then finish with the elevator.
Same thing with escalators. They are often paired with stairs. So take those stairs every single time, until it becomes a no-brainer for you! Bonus points if you are carrying luggage or shopping bags! And if you feel weird or embarrassed because everybody else is taking the escalator, please think about this for a second. You have seen the small electric carts in the supermarkets, right? Do you use them? Unless you are disabled or temporarily injured, you probably don’t. Why not? You most likely feel that they are not for you, that you don’t need them BECAUSE YOU CAN WALK JUST FINE. Well then, why should elevators or escalators be any different? If you can walk up a few stairs just fine, then you don’t need electric assistance.
That’s the thing! Why would you take the elevator yet also go to the gym? This does not make much sense if you think about it. Take the stairs AND go to the gym, yes! Or take the stairs often and high enough, and you might be able to skip the gym once in a while :-).
I haven’t been to a gym for a couple of years. I am not a fan. But if my meeting or hotel room is on the 14th floor, I am taking the stairs, no question. And there are many other things I do in my everyday life that keep me fit without necessarily “working out” much. It is sometimes hard to find real-life examples when it comes to transitioning to a healthier lifestyle. So, if you want to know a few things that I do to stay healthy and in shape, I will be happy to share some of my DAILY HABITS with you :-). Just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know that you want me to share more.
If you feel that you need a help figuring out how to be healthier or manage your weight, contact me or make an appointment for a FREE 20-minute consultation. I’ll be honored to chat with you and see how you can stack all the odds in your favor. Allons-y! Let’s Go!
©2017 Allons-y Coaching, LLC – Seattle, WA – All rights in all media reserved.
When you are trying to set up a new healthy routine, vacation can be a real struggle. Especially if you are still at the beginning of your wellness journey. So let me give you some very easy tricks that will help you stay on track while having a blast.
The first option, you forget about everything you have been trying to do so far, indulge non-stop: at the buffet, at the bar, at the ice-cream parlor. Of course, you pay the price for it.
The second option, you are super firm and dedicated, you stick to all your rules, you do not enjoy the buffet, you do not allow yourself the luxury of a few drinks or treats, and you sweat on the treadmill rather than relax at the beach. You come back like you haven’t had a vacation at all.
Then there is a 3rd option, and this is the one I’d like to talk to you about: this is the option where you find a compromise. That is, you don’t let go of your healthy principles, but you also focus on enjoying your vacation 100%, and in my opinion, food and drinks are part of that deal.
So how do you compromise? The idea is that you need to stay in that healthy mindset that you have been working on for a while. In your head (and that is VERY IMPORTANT!), you have to stick to the healthy person that you have started to become. Because if you get up every morning, thinking of yourself as someone healthy, you will make healthier choices during the day than if you were waking up thinking of yourself as someone who doesn’t care about wellness, about feeling good and energized, about keeping up with the kids, etc.
So what can you do to be in that healthy mindset? Small things actually, tiny simple things:
Every morning, as soon as you set foot on the ground, drink a large glass of water. At least 10 or 12 oz. This makes you feel clean inside, and will make you less inclined to put junk food in your stomach at breakfast. Even better, you can do that regularly during the day. Before every meal or snack, drink a cup of water. It will help you stay hydrated, which is very important when you travel, and it will help you feel better and eat better during the meal that comes right after that glass of water. Try it, you might get addicted to it!
Check out if there is a yoga or a stretching class offered at your hotel (if you stay in a hotel). If there is one, sign up for the early morning class, and take it BEFORE breakfast. If there are no classes or you are camping or in a condo, go for a 20 or 30-minute brisk walk. Again, do that before breakfast. If you start your day with some gentle exercise and go to breakfast afterward, you won’t feel like eating heavy greasy stuff. You will be hungry, but you will feel like eating stuff that is good for your body, because you’ve just done a workout that IS good for your body and you won’t want to spoil that.
Be careful though. I am not advocating a 10-mile run or a boot camp session before breakfast! First, because you need fuel for that kind of exercise and usually shouldn’t do it without eating a bit beforehand. And also because the idea here is to keep the workout gentle, so that you feel like you have done something good for your body, but it doesn’t give you an excuse to eat as if you were recovering from a marathon. You see what I mean, right? Stretching, yoga or a 20-minute brisk walk don’t require you to eat more than usual. They are good activities for your body, but they won’t burn many calories. If you don’t feel comfortable moving around before you have swallowed something, no worries, have a piece of fruit right after your glass of water when you get up and then, head out!
When you are at a buffet, whether it’s for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, start by covering half of your plate with fruits, veggies (potatoes and French fries don’t count!) and/or leafy greens. Then only, you can focus on the rest and fill up the other half of your plate with whatever you want. And make sure you enjoy the entire plate! If you go for seconds or thirds, no problem. Just do it all over again. Cover half of your plate with fruits, leafy greens, or veggies and eat them :-). Use the same rule for dessert. You want a Sundae? Have one! But have the equivalent volume of fresh fruit with it. And start by eating the fruits. Chances are you won’t have a second sundae, or you might not even be able to finish the first one!
If you eat at a restaurant, keep in mind that the amount of food on your plate will most likely be two times what your body really needs. Unless you eat in a foreign gourmet restaurant, try to only eat half of what is brought to you Split with someone else or save half or your dish for later if you have a way to keep it cool and reheat. Ideally, you can ask your server to put half or your order in a box before it even reaches your table. You will see, it will still be a very reasonable amount of food. If you feel like it’s not big enough, order a side salad, or a cup of fruit that you can eat as a dessert, to finish on a sweet note.
Wherever you go, take some stairs! Your room or condo is on the 10th floor? Start with 2 flights and then finish with the elevator. After a couple of days, you might be able to do 3 flights of stairs, or 4. Why not 10 by the end of the vacation? Give me one good reason why you would not take the stairs. You can’t find them? Ask at the front desk! You are too tired? Don’t worry, you will rest in a few minutes. It takes forever? Well, you are on vacation, right? The kids don’t want to take the stairs? Go on your own if you can, and enjoy a few minutes of silence :-). Otherwise, try to challenge the kids, make it a game, who can go the highest!?
It’s always the same idea: if you have been taking the stairs every day, 3 or 4 times a day, you might think twice when the bag of potato chips starts requiring your attention. If you want to get more motivation and ideas around elevators, stay tuned. I am quite passionate about elevators and will not resist the urge to write a full article about them soon!
Try to walk as much as you can. It will allow you to see so many amazing things, to meet people, to get to places you could not see if you were driving. Walking is one of the best things you can do for your body, but also for your mind and soul. Once you start walking places, the world is yours to discover and you’ll see, you will feel much healthier. So every time you are about to take the car or a shuttle, think twice about it and see if maybe you could walk instead. And make sure you incorporate some easy hiking into your vacation schedule. Of course, if you can, try to also swim, jump, dance, rent a bike, paddle board, etc… And don’t forget to always bring water with you!
It’s YOUR vacation and you deserve to enjoy it however you see fit! Have fun doing things, eating things, and drinking whatever it is you are drinking. Just use the 5 tips above to remind yourself nonstop that you are a healthy person and that you make the right choices for yourself. If you think like that healthy person you have started to become, it will make a difference in what you end up eating and drinking. And most importantly, it may make a difference in the quantities you will end up eating and drinking. So just relax and give yourself some slack. And I am going to do the same, while staying true to who I am and what I love.
If you are worried about an upcoming vacation or have specific questions about what to do to stay healthy, email me, I’d be happy to hear from you! And don’t forget to share your own tips or remarks in the comments section, because together, we are healthier!
If you want continuous support with your health goals, join me on Instagram or follow my Facebook Page. You will have access to weekly tips, challenges, strategies, and lots of FREE resources to support you in your health quest. And of course, if you are ready to change your lifestyle for the better but don’t know exactly where to begin, call me and we will get you started!
©2017 Allons-y Coaching, LLC – Seattle, WA – All rights in all media reserved.
Have you decided to be healthier and more active? Good for you! I hope I can support you on this wonderful journey. My previous article “What is the best workout for you” might help you.
But, what about your kids? They look healthy, right? They are full of energy- if only you could find the OFF button sometimes! – You juggle lunch boxes, healthy snacks, trying to fit dinner between soccer practice and ballet.
But what should you really focus on to make sure they fuel properly, feel good during practice, improve in the sports they love, and recover fast after a tough workout?
As a mom of 3 myself, I have been sitting on the bleachers quite a bit, chatting with parents, talking with coaches, and observing the kids. So first, let me tell you about usual errors I have seen.
– Eating food that’s hard to digest right before practice: fatty meat, anything fried, chips, burgers, nuggets, etc.
– Eating food that creates a sudden burst of energy and then a crash: foods with refined sugar, sweets, soda, candy, etc.
– Not eating regularly during the day before practice or skipping meals.
– Arriving at practice dehydrated. The best way to stay hydrated is to drink WATER!
Good, now we know what NOT to do.
In a nutshell, we have to remember that CARBS provide energy. PROTEINS help with muscle growth and repair. Good quality FATS make everything run smoothly and keep us warm. OK, it’s a bit of a shortcut, but sometimes, it’s good to stick to the basics.
A combo of the 4 things below:
– Easy to digest CARBS (applesauce, dried fruits, fresh fruits…)
– Complex CARBS (bread, bagel, crackers, granola, oatmeal, pretzels…)
– A bit of PROTEIN (nut butter, string cheese, plain yogurt, plain milk, fish, lean meat such as turkey or chicken… but nothing fried! )
Avoid FAT right before practice: it hard to digest! Stay away from chicken nuggets, chips, fries or burgers just before practice.
If practice lasts longer than 1 hour, you can add a bit of juice in that water, or you can give your child some dried fruits for a quick snack.
If practice lasts over 2 hours, maybe some extra sodium will be required. Either in a drink (such as coconut water for example) or in a salty snack like crackers or pretzels.
If your child is not allergic, a handful of nuts or a string cheese might be a good option right after practice, so that your kid doesn’t starve on the way home from the locker room. But don’t give them too much if dinner is around the corner!
When you get home, you want to feed your children a well-balanced meal with enough water to help them recover faster. By well balanced, I mean, whole foods (REAL foods!) that provide them with carbs, protein, and good fat. What I call “good fat” is, for example, lean meat, fish, eggs, nuts, seeds, avocado, whole milk and whole milk yogurt, cheese…).
They will be hungry after practice, so why not start the meal with plenty of green vegetables? We are less picky when we are starving 🙂
Of course, all children are different, and their needs will vary depending on their age, where they are on their growth curve, what their allergies and preferences are, etc.
The most important thing to keep in mind is that what is healthy for you is usually healthy for your child, and what is NOT healthy for you, is most of the time NOT HEALTHY FOR YOUR CHILD. So focus on real food (as opposed to highly processed food) and plain water, and you will be stacking all the odds in their favor!
Go feed those champions and if you have questions, ask away in the comment section or email me. I will be happy to try and help where I can.
If you want continuous support with your health goals, join me on Instagram or follow my Facebook Page. You will have access to weekly tips, challenges, strategies, and lots of FREE resources to support you in your health quest.
©2018 Allons-y Coaching, LLC – Seattle, WA – All rights in all media reserved.
You have decided that this year will be THE year you get in shape. Yes! I hope you find inspiration and support in my New Year’s Resolutions Series. Now, if part of your plan is to become more active (it’s often a good idea!), you might wonder what workout will guarantee the best results.
There is so much to choose from! Some people tell you to do cardio, others only swear by strength training. New trendy workouts are popping up everywhere, such as HIIT, the High-Intensity Interval Training.
Let me give you the 4 most important characteristics of your ideal workout.
Ideally, the workout you choose makes you happy while you do it. It seems pretty obvious, but actually, if you look at what most people do for exercise, this is a criterion that doesn’t very often come into the equation. Yet, it is probably the most important!
Think about it: if exercising makes you happy, just like laying down on the beach, meeting your friends for happy hour, or going to the movies, there is a good chance you will stick with it for the rest of your life. But if you dread it, the more you’ll work out, the more miserable you’ll be, and eventually, you will quit.
Sometimes, the workout itself is not highly enjoyable but there is something about it that you truly appreciate. Maybe it’s the way you feel when you are done. Maybe it’s the image it gives of yourself. Maybe it’s the people you are doing it with, whom you otherwise never get to see. Maybe it’s your only chance to be outdoors, or alone, or to listen to music… Whatever it is for you, there MUST be something specific you look forward to or gain from your workout, otherwise, this workout is definitely not the best for you.
By low-maintenance, I mean a workout that does not require too much of the resources you don’t have.
Let’s say you are super busy and time is your most scarce resource. You have to make sure that your workout is not time-consuming. Otherwise, you will always find reasons not to fit it in your busy schedule, and even when you make room for exercise, you will always feel that maybe you should be using your time for something else, something “more important”.
If money is the thing you are lacking and you pick a workout that’s not free or super cheap, there will be times when you won’t be able to afford exercising. And when you can afford it, you will feel guilty that you are not spending your money elsewhere.
Time and money are often the things we struggle the most with, but maybe your case is different. Whatever it is that you don’t have much of, just make sure that you pick a workout that doesn’t make you resentful, and doesn’t make you second guess yourself every time you exercise.
Ideally, you will want to workout without knowing you are working out. Whether you call it “commute”, or “fun with friends”, or “playing with the kids”, or “walking the dog”, if you do the things that you have to do in life or that you WANT to do in life, and those things are actually a good workout, bingo! You will end up living an active life naturally. Physical activity will be a given, you won’t have to worry about carving time for the gym or for a run. You will become “unconsciously” active, which, research has shown, is the best way to live a healthy life.
Now go for a walk and start thinking about the ideal workout plan for yourself. Try to find many different ways to be active. Make sure your plan looks like your investment portfolio. Don’t put all your eggs in the same basket. This way, when your gym closes, or your financial situation changes, or you lose a workout buddy, your whole plan will not fall apart. You will just have to patch one area.
And of course, make sure you ease into it and don’t injure yourself. The goal is to stick with it, remember 🙂
Now be creative and if you need ideas, let me know. I am here to help and answer questions, don’t hesitate, shoot me an email or schedule a 20-minute FREE call!
©2018 Allons-y Coaching, LLC – Seattle, WA – All rights in all media reserved.