Brenda and I have been on holiday and we decided before we went that we would take 2 weeks off and enjoy ourselves without feeling guilty. It has been a good exercise for us, as we have had a chance to see what habits we have managed to achieve and what we need to work on.
- Drink more water – We all know how much water we should drink and the benefits that it gives us. But how many of us manage to achieve it? It was something that I was never very good at, and I could still do better, but I am drinking much more water on a daily basis. I feel that this a good achievement and one that I can build on. I always drink plenty of water when I am exercising and will now go for water when I am thirsty. Drinking more water is undoubtly good for me and I have found no disadvantages yet! While we were on holiday I still managed to drink water on a daily basis, not as much as I had been drinking but it still featured in my daily life. My next step is to cut down on coffee and to increase my daily water intake, which, to tell you the truth, scares me just thinking about it but wanting to achieve my dreams is making me more determined to do this.
- Portion Control – How many times have I heard about portion control? Loads! After I had an operation to put a stent in my heart it was all I heard from doctors, nurses, nutritionists and well meaning friends. A palm size of protein, a cupped hand of carbs and a fist size of vegetables. I had never really thought about portion control because I cooked good healthy food so that was ok! When we decided to lose weight we decided to give it a go. First of all we cut down the amount of food we ate but I forgot to cook less food, so the leftovers would get munched while tidying up or even some cheeky seconds. Surprisingly we did not lose much weight, silly portion control. We then took another look at it and this time we would pack away the leftovers before we sat down to eat and they would become lunches or get frozen for a meal at a later date. This has worked much better for us and is a firm habit in this house. Not much chance to do this on holiday but I know this is one habit that is here for life.
- Getting active – I love being active…..now! I used to be very active in my work, as a young mother and in daily living, I didn’t go to a gym or exercise class. Before I would run for the couch when we had free time but now it is quite different. When my health took a nose dive I became very inactive and any activity became a struggle. It has taken a while, after 3 years of inactivity I started to look at what I felt I would be able to achieve. It did begin with baby steps, a gentle walk, a wee swim or some sailing and now I am going to the gym twice a week, an exercise class when I can and getting out and about in my daily life. I do enjoy being active and keeping busy but I also still love running for the couch! While we were on holiday I challenged myself to complete a walk that I did not think I would be able to do, I managed it, it wasn’t easy but I am so pleased that I did it. I think this is a habit that is definitely here to stay.
- Healthy Snacks – I used to wonder what on earth a healthy snack was, when I wanted a snack it was always chocolate or crisps or biscuits. I have to confess that I lived in Turkey for a couple of years when I was 5 years old where the fruit is absolutely delicious and it totally ruined me for the fruit we get here. I have worked over the last 5 years to introduce more fruit into my daily diet and have found fruits that I can rely on. I love fruit and yoghurt in the mornings and I will now have an apple and an orange a day as my afternoon snack and sometimes even more fruit in the evening depending on what is available. If healthy snacks are fruit based I have that covered.
Will Power – My will power is zero….. I am soo weak! I have put systems in place ( see here ) to help me with staying on track so that I don’t have to think about it too much but I know that if I am left unsupervised for a while I could go off track all too easily. I will forever continue work on my will power but while I do so I will have failures so I will not beat myself up about it but move on and strive to not fail this time.
What mistakes have you managed to overcome? What do you do to make habits work?
Here’s to living the dream,