Don’t you just love the start of a new year? Everyone is so happy and pumped and the positive vibes all over social media are infectious– every time I open my phone I see more goals and resolutions and promises for the year ahead and it makes me feel like doing a mini fist pump. A new year brings with it the chance to be reborn, to wipe the slate clean, to forget about all the bad times of the previous year and pretend like they never even happened. You are a whole new person and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
I can’t stop writing stuff. It’s like I’ve been given a new brain, one that doesn’t know how to switch off and I’m amazed at how quickly I’ve gone from sitting around in my new FatFace PJ’s drinking all the wine to 110% focusing on nailing the shit out of 2017. I have a hunger in my belly to do as much as possible this year in terms of work and I’m feeling a tad unstoppable. My mood is somewhat similar to a small child who’s eaten too many red skittles– I am absolutely buzzing.
Along with all the excitement and high hope of what’s to come, I’m a tad nervous and fearful of the outcome of certain situations. I am trying not to be Negative Nancy here but there is a little voice in the back of my mind telling me there are tough times ahead; a storm before the calm. I can’t really talk too much about what this situation is but let’s just say it’s been going on for the past 7 years and is what stands between us and our dream of a home of our own. And it is literally the bane of my life.
I feel at this time of the year when I’m trying to be the best girl boss one can be, it’s more important than ever for me to take care of myself properly and start the year how I mean to go on. I’m not talking about fad diets and gruelling exercise regimens, I’m talking about taking care of myself on the inside too. Old habits die hard and I know I’m not the only one who drank a little bit too much over the festive period and I’m definitely feeling the effects of it now that it’s January. So here are 11 ways to feel healthier in 2017. Come on guys, we got this!
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1. Drink more water
I know, I know I’m bored with hearing this too but guys it’s SO important if you want to feel good and have clear skin and most of all if you’re trying to lose the extra pounds you may or may not have gained over Christmas. Look, I’m not judging I’m just trying to help.
2. The Body Coach workouts
Most of you have probably heard of Joe Wicks or seen one of his many Lean In 15 books so hopefully you know who I’m talking about. He is currently doing a Facebook live HIIT challenge 3 days a week– Monday, Weds and Friday mornings at 6:30am. These are 30 minute workouts and you can follow along at home in the comfort of your living room. Or kitchen, or wherever the hell you can crawl to at that time in the morning.
3. Green Tea
Just remember, it takes up to 3 weeks for your taste buds to become accustomed to certain tastes. Just. Hang. On. In. There.
No seriously, I hated the stuff at first but now I basically down it in one, slam my mug down on the kitchen counter and wait for the kettle to re-boil so I can make another one. There are so many benefits to drinking green tea, not to mention the fact it counts toward your daily water intake. Heads up, Asda’s own seems to taste the best and don’t forget you can also get caffeine free green tea to drink late at night. The excitement is too much I know.
I started looking into getting Vitamins at the end of last year to help me with my Crohn’s and also because I had some weird joint pain that I couldn’t decide was down to the Crohn’s or from working out. I was advised to get Vitamin D3 which is really good this time of year when we have shorter days and less light. I really feel like they help boost my happy hormones so I’d definitely recommend those. I also got some MSM, Glucosamine & Chondroitin (don’t worry, I can’t pronounce it either) which is for your joints although I have read mixed reviews on this and some people claim it’s just a placebo. I got mine from Myprotein and they currently have a discount on some of their vitamins.
5. Sleep more
So I was a lucky little bunny at Christmas because I ended up with a FitBit that was actually a gift for Rich’s mum but she didn’t want it so gave it to me! Winner. It tells me my heart rate and how many steps I do in a day and cals burned and how much sleep I didn’t get last night. Basically it’s my entire life in a red watch and I love it. Every morning Rich and I compare how well we slept and then at the end of the day he likes to see if he has beaten me on how many steps we’ve done but unfortunately for him, I clean for a living so y’know, I’m always gonna be one step ahead… see what I did there?
I’m massively rambling now but the point is, this Fitbit has got me thinking about how much I sleep and even though I’ve always known I’m a bad sleeper, I am shocked at how bad it actually is. Obviously we need sleep for so many reasons but if there’s one reason to make sure you’re getting enough shut-eye at night, it’s that whilst you sleep your body burns fat. Crazy. This could explain why I always wake up with morning abs. Shame it only lasts a miniscule of a second eh?
Walking is seriously underrated. It is one of those rare activities that can help clear my head from all the constant chatter and guess what? It’s totally free. Going for a 30 minute walk early in the morning before food is a good way to burn fat but also it makes you feel energised for the day ahead. When I lived at my Mum’s I was up walking Sid just before sunrise and it really set me up for the day. I was also at my skinniest back then and I put it down to all the walking. You can download strava onto your phone which records how far you are going each time.
7. Invest in some new workout clothes
When I opened my new gym leggings on Christmas Day, I had this urge to put them on, skip Christmas dinner and head straight to the gym. I didn’t, obviously but the thought was there. Getting new workout clothes is one of the best ways to motivate yourself into working out and you really don’t have to go crazy and spend too much. My new trainers were in the January sales in the Nike store at the Outlet and cost me £42. They are actually the 2015 range but these ones are similar. However, if you’re just starting out and you’re not planning on going every day like I have been, then Asda George do some cute ones for £14! Bargain. I also bought another pair of leggings because you can never have too many pairs right? These ones from New Look are SO comfy, they feel similar to wearing tights and are only £15.99.
8. Eat Less beige food
Who else looked at their dinner plates over Christmas and realised there was a serious lack of colour going on? I didn’t cook one single meal over the Christmas period as we basically managed to find leftovers at either my parents house, Rich’s parents house or at a friends. We also ate out quite a few times too and so when it was time to fend for ourselves again, I was a little bit lost. It is so easy to not eat vegetables over the holidays due to the fact people mainly cook nibbles and party food and it would look really weird if there was a random plate of brocoli lying amongst the cheese twists and mini sausage rolls. When cooking our ‘normal time of the year’ evening meal, I make sure we always have some sort of green veg on our plates. Green veggies are the best because there isn’t a lot to them but they leave you feeling full so basically you can pile your plate high with them and not feel guilty for gobbling up the lot.
9. Skin care
My skin care routine in 2016 involved me wiping my makeup off with a few baby wipes then applying some moisturiser. Job done. But for Christmas I got some Liz Earle cleanse and polish which I thought was only for wealthy people’s faces because it can be a tad on the expensive side depending on which one you get, but lucky me, I now get to cleanse my skin properly for the first time in my life. And it’s so dreamy to use and it smells expensive and posh and leaves my skin feeling so clean and soft. I better start saving my pennies for when it runs out as I know for sure I’ll be wanting to invest in some more.
10. Power smoothies
Rich got me a nutribullet for Christmas because our blender has seen better days and is a nightmare to wash up. As you know, my Crohns isn’t the best at the moment so I wanted to see if having a smoothie for breakfast might help to calm things down a bit. I already shared my favourite breakfast smoothie in this post and so far I feel a lot healthier knowing that I’m getting even more greens into my diet on a daily basis. The idea is to find recipes with more veggies in than fruits as otherwise they can be quite sugary. This nutribullet is currently on sale at John Lewis.
11. Down time
I don’t know about you but I find it incredibly hard to switch off most days and more often than not I’ll be thinking about all the things I have to do as soon as I get into bed. Not great for that much-needed sleep I was talking about earlier. For Christmas I asked for one of those adult colouring books as I’d heard they were a great way to help relax you and the other night I spent an hour colouring one of the pages. Afterwards I felt so good because I managed to not think about anything for the entire time. I guess you could also say meditating is a great way to switch off but I tried this last year and I found it quite hard! I’m trying to find time each week to either colour, take photos, or read one of the many books that sit on my bedside table.
How about you? Do you have any secrets to kick starting a healthy lifestyle?
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