WHERE DID THIS YEAR GO!? *breathing heavily*. January is just around the corner…and so are New Years Resolutions! Today I've enlisted the help of my FCF Team member, Mary, to help me out (as I'm still with extended family for Christmas Break) and share some of the ways she's getting healthy in 2017. She has fabulous ideas, so I'll let her take it from here!
Thanks Jordan! With the new year just days away I have been thinking about my goals. One of the top New Year's resolutions people make each year is to get healthy but sadly many don’t stick with it after a month or two (myself included!). While there are tons of reasons for “falling off the wagon,” I have found that one of the biggest factors is failing to plan. I know it sounds cheesy but the whole “fail to plan, plan to fail” adage really can be true! I am determined to make 2017 the year of creating long lasting healthy habits not only for myself, but for my whole family.
Here are a few things we are doing that are keeping us on track.
1. Find our Why
One of the biggest things I learned while doing Budget Boot Camp earlier this year is the importance of knowing your why. Setting a new goal generally means changing some part of your life or routine, and change is HARD! Knowing your why, the reason behind the goal, can help keep you stay motivated and keep your eye on the prize. Grab a journal and write it down. Another big key is to break your overall goal down into small, manageable goals. If your goal is to get healthy, what does that specifically mean for you? Maybe it means being more active, eating less processed food, getting more sleep, reducing stress, etc. You then take those ideas and create specific attainable goals.
2.Plan Your Meals Ahead of Time
Meal planning isn’t just good for your checkbook, it’s good for your waistline too! How many times does 5:00 roll around and you have a million things going on and can’t think of what to make for dinner. Or perhaps you are running kids from baseball to basketball to soccer and don’t have time to make dinner. I get it, trust me I’ve been there many times! This is where meal planning comes in. Pick a day to spend 10-20 minutes sitting down with your calendar and planning out a full week of dinners. If you have days where you won’t be home or need something low maintenance, pull out the slow cooker! If you have a slow day with extra time try and make a double batch of dinner that night, one to eat and one to freeze. Your future self will thank you.Keep track of your meal plan on a notepad or a white board and keep it where you can see it. (See how Jordan's meal planning tips here and here)
3. Carry Snacks With You
Remember how I mentioned planning is key for meal times? The same is true for being on the go! It is so much easier to pass by those drive thru's, saving you time, money, AND calories, when you have a great alternative option handy. I like to keep healthy non-perishable snacks in my car and purse so I know I always have something on hand when I need it. One of my favorite places to get healthy and affordable snacks is CVS. Not only do they have some of my favorite brands such as Kind, Kashi, and Larabars, but their Gold Emblem abound line makes it even easier by displaying certain items indicating nutritional benefits or indicators such as “good source of protein,” “good source of fiber” or “gluten-free.” Next time you are in their checkout line pick up a few healthy options for when you need something on-the-go.
4. Make Time to Move
When I think of exercise I think hitting it hard at the gym for an hour each day or going for a long run. While those are both great options I have found that I am more consistent with exercise when I keep it simple and at home. I love doing interval training workouts using simple tools like resistance bands, hand weights, and an exercise ball. Don’t forget to use your own body weight too, it’s a great tool and it’s free! I am not a runner by any means but if you want to get started here are a few tips that might help.
5. Most Important: Sleep
According to studies Americans currently average about 6 hours of sleep a night, when the recommended is seven to nine. Study after study show how a lack of sleep can affect your overall health so while I’m listing this as the last tip it really is the most important! Sleep can affect your overall energy, making exercise harder and also increases hunger which can be a stumbling block for healthy eating. My top three tips for sleep are create a night time routine, set a time to be in bed and stick to it, and keep your room cool and dark. I like using a sleep mask and occasionally use Melatonin when needed.
I hope these tips help you! Do you make New Year’s Resolutions? I’d love to hear them!
**Public Service Announcement:**
If you currently have money in your FSA (not HSA) that DOES NOT rollover to next year be sure to use it and stock up on FSA eligible products. (Check your guidelines for what is approved) Remember that is YOUR money and you don't want to lose it.
*Offer available online only. Expires 12/31/16 at 11:59 PM ET. To receive 40% off regularly priced CVS Health™ FSA eligible and 20% off all regular priced products, enter Coupon Code FSA40 at Checkout. The following products and brands are excluded from the discount Baby Food & Formula, Select Bulk & Case Packs, Ensure Nutrition Powder, Essie, HP Ink & Toner, Lift Chairs, Neutrogena Light Therapy, Oraquick, Perfume & Cologne, Prevagen, Pre-Seed, Scooters, Walkers & Rollators, Wheelchairs and Zanfel. This promotion also excludes prescriptions and gift cards and is not valid for orders placed on CVS.com/Photo and CVS Pharmacy® Optical. Savings are not transferable. No cash back. Tax charged on pre-coupon price where required. Tax and shipping charges are not applicable towards your order total.
**Free 2-day shipping applies to a nonprescription order that totals $49 or more after all discounts have been applied. See CVS.com/shippinginformation for important details about 2-day shipping.
We hope these tips help your family get health, as we plan on it helping ours! Happy New Year to you all!
Thanks Mary! Such great ideas. I know for me, SLEEP is the top of my list this year. How do YOU plan to get healthy in 2017?