It’s that time of year again, time for Spring Cleaning! The snow is melting, the sun is shining, and we focus on purging all the clutter in our lives. Most times, we consider Spring Cleaning a time to go through over flowing closets, organizing junk drawers, and ridding our houses of those pesky dust bunnies. But, have you ever thought about applying that same mentality towards your fitness and health routine? This is a perfect time to step back and reassess what works for you and what changes need to be made in order to jump start your motivation.
Keep reading for 14 tips to help get you on the right track for success!
Are you apart of the 20% who regularly get an annual check-up? If not, this is the time to join the club! Even if you feel fine and do not have any stand out issues, it is still important to stay on top of things like your cholesterol, blood pressure, and possible vitamin deficiencies. The results can help gauge future risk of possible medical issues as well as help you mold your workout/meal plans for your specific needs.
Now that the warmer months are here, chances are, you will be spending more time in the sunshine. It’s important to make sure you protect your skin from harmful UV rays by applying waterproof lotion to all exposed areas. Make sure you use lotion with at least SPF15 and follow the suggested directions for how often to re-apply. Keep a look out for any new moles, marks, or blemishes and if you notice any, make an appointment right away with a dermatologist.
Make sure your food choices align with a healthy lifestyle. Raid your pantry and get rid of any sugary snacks and items that are high in fat or calories with little to no nutritional value. Once you’re done, head to the Famers Market and pick up healthy alternatives such as fresh fruit and veggies or dried fruit and nuts.
Now that the junk food has been tossed, take a moment to plan out weekly menus. Make a list of all the healthy ingredients you already have and build meals around it. For any items you are still in need of, add them to your grocery list. While grocery shopping, stick to your list! This will help you to avoid adding snacks and junk food to your cart. Once you have all ingredients, you can then cook the healthy meals and prep them on Sunday for the week. When you meal prep, you have your daily meals already completed which will help to minimize the unhealthy take out trips made as last minute options.
We have all been there, you feel great about your workouts and food choices you’ve been making only to step on the scale and see no change. That can leave you feeling defeated and unmotivated to continue. It’s time to ditch the scale as your only way of measuring success! Remember that muscle weighs more than fat and you can be getting more toned without shedding those pounds. Try measuring your progress by the way certain clothing items fit you now or by using measuring tape to keep track of inches lost. Focus on how you feel and the positive change that comes from within.
Create a fitness bulletin board and put it somewhere that you will see every day. Include “before” photos of yourself, inspiring pictures from magazines or websites, motivational messages and quotes, and bib numbers from races. The possibilities are endless! Make sure to include anything and everything that will keep you energized and excited about fitness.
Keep the motivation going! Look for health and fitness pages that you can follow. Many of them have easy workouts you can try and healthy recipe ideas. It’s also a great way to feel like you are not alone in your fitness journey.
Consistency is key. Utilize that bulletin board you are creating and post a workout schedule. Put a check mark or line through the activity once it’s completed. This will hold you accountable for the workout goals you have set for yourself.
Enlist a workout buddy that shares your goals and motivation. Having a partner greatly increases your chances of success. By encouraging each other, you have now created a support system. Remember, you are not alone!
Sticking with the same routine, treadmill, weights, repeat, can cause you to plateau and increases your chances of becoming bored. If you find yourself clock watching or dreading every mile of your run, it’s time to seek out something new. Now that the sun is shining, head outdoors! Mix it up with a hike, biking, yoga in the park, or sign up for a race. Ultimately, workouts should bring you joy. You must be excited about fitness. Think outside the box!
Sometimes its easy to over exert yourself. Make sure you include some rest and relaxation in your schedule. Mental health is just as important as physical health. Take some time to unwind with a pedicure, massage, or even gardening. Every hard-working body deserves some pampering.
It’s time to ditch that winter playlist and spruce it up with some fresh new songs. Effective exercise tunes can greatly enhance motivation and results. Update your playlist, pop in your headphones, and get to grooving.
If you have been hitting the gym this past winter, your footwear may have reached the end of the road. Most footwear lasts anywhere from 250-350 miles, that includes any time outside the gym that you spend in them as well. Head over to a running footwear store and have an associate help you out to find a pair that fits well and is comfortable. The last thing you want is for your feet to be unnecessarily sore or cause an injury because of an old shoe or poor fit.
Fitness clothing is no longer just sweats and sneakers. Update your closet, rid yourself of all the ill-fitting garments and invest in flattering, high-quality exercise apparel. You will be more likely to push yourself harder if you feel good about yourself in your clothes. Make sure you add accessories as well! The Gymwrap or Bandi is a perfect accessory to add style to your look as well as functionality as a sweatband.
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