Remember in your 20s and 30s when you thought you'd have it all figured out when you were older?
Of course, you’ve learned a thing or two (or a million) along the way. But somehow finding balance still seems so out of reach. And, you're not alone.
We can all relate to feeling stressed out and anxious over one thing or another. Stress is a normal experience. We all have stress and feel anxious from time to time.
Chronic stress and anxiety, however, is a serious problem. It can be detrimental not only to your mental health but your physical health as well.
We all know or are that person that says "I want to get in shape, but [insert reason]" Mostly it's that you have no time or you're waiting until after the holidays or you don't have a gym nearby, and so on.
Let me tell you about my friend. She’s in her 50s, married, raised two kids, is active in her community and built a nice career. She’s busy but comfortable and enjoys a nice life and she wants to work on her fitness goals, but guess what she doesn't do?
The weight loss journey is an uphill battle for most of us. Bottom line is that we need to eat right and regularly be active.
We also know that we need to have strategies and systems in place to achieve the right eating habits, and to be motivated enough to do our daily workouts. Keeping a food diary, having an accountability partner, Sunday preps, etc. - all these are systems most of us use.
But what if there were other methods that could help actually make weight loss easier and well - more bearable?
People often make the mistake of waiting to feel motivated. The hard truth is that you won’t always feel motivated. You won’t always feel inspired.
Yes, external motivators - that perfect dress, your coming high school reunion - can help but they won’t ultimately create the lasting change and the lasting effect you’re looking for. Consider this. What happens after you've worn the dress? You start to relax and ease up on your workouts. What happens after the reunion? You may start sneaking in some not-so-healthy food in your meals.
The main takeaway here is that you don’t wait for people, things or events to get you motivated. You must create your own motivation.
We’re never too old and it’s never too late. Making the most of our next chapter is often about taking very small steps everyday. It doesn’t need to be one big thing. It can be asking ourselves what we will do today towards creating our next chapter. It’s an ONGOING GROWTH. Whatever your life has been, your next chapter is something you could create and become your best one yet.
You’re on a journey to lose weight and have more energy. It’s only been a month but your goals seem miles away. After all, this isn’t just a quick fix to losing those unwanted pounds that have piled up over the year. This is a complete overhaul of your lifestyle – from your daily physical activities all the way to your meal plans. And we both know this could take a long time.
“Once I lose the weight and inches, I’m going to look so good in that dress.”
“I’m going to wear that top and skirt when my waist is more defined.”
If your line of thinking is this way, stop. You can look fabulous even while you’re still working on those goals.
We really are what we eat. Feed yourself a diet compromised of processed foods, drink diet sodas and coffee all day, and believe me you will get depressed. Of course there are many other reasons for depression and you should seek medical advice if you are suffering from this debilitating disease. You can, however, help your body and your mind by feeding it the right foods. More and more studies are coming out that support our abilities to alleviate, if not cure, anxiety, depression, insomnia and a host of other disorders through nutrition.
No matter how good our intentions are we all come up against roadblocks on our weight loss journey. Trying to bust through those roadblocks can be extremely difficult, especially when they are built up through our own negative thoughts.
How many times have you set out determined to lose weight and get back in shape but nothing seems to happen. Maybe you’ve vowed to eat better and go to the gym but when it comes right down to it, life gets in the way; you ended up working late, you too tired to cook dinner after working a long day, you already get up early enough you can’t possibly wake up any earlier, or well you get the idea. Although these reasons are legitimate, they are still excuses. Everyone is busy, no one wants to cook at the end of the day and let’s face it’s pretty easy to put off what we don’t want to do. The problem is, not only will these excuses keep you from reaching your goal, next year you’ll very likely weigh a little more, be a little bit more out of shape and possibly have some aches and pains as well as low energy to go along with that.
Lisa Swanson is an ACE Certified Health Coach, Personal Trainer and Orthopedic Exercise Specialist as well as a certified AASDN and PN level 1 nutritionist. With over 35 years experience helping people turn their lives around, she is on a mission to provide relevant and useful knowledge to help women in midlife reach their goals.
Check out my interview with the Magnificent Midlife podcast on staying fit and healthy long-term.