If you’re having a hard time buttoning up your jeans nowadays, you’re not the only one. After months of staying at home and sweatpants, maybe you’ve decided it’s time to get back on the bandwagon. The truth is, getting back on track doesn’t have to mean cutting out all your favorite foods or working out for hours a day.
Getting back on track can be as simple as implementing small habits, like walking on the treadmill a few times per week. It’s the small things done consistently that make the most significant difference in your health. Here are five things you can do to start getting back on track today.
1. Eat More Protein
There are so many benefits to eating adequate amounts of protein. Protein helps increase overall muscle mass, boosts metabolism, increases fat-burning, lowers blood pressure, and can help reduce your appetite. If we are talking about getting back on track, adding in more protein should be a focus. Plus, we think that emphasizing “adding in” rather than “cutting out” food groups can be a beneficial mindset to have not to feel deprived.
2. Increase Water Intake
Water is underrated when it comes to losing weight and getting on track. Water makes up 60% of our bodies, and it needs to be replenished. Water helps boost metabolism, increases energy (this one is important!), supports brain function and digestion. We suggest drinking half your body weight in ounces of water per day.
3. Move 3x per week
When you’re thinking about getting back on track, it can seem overwhelming to go from sedentary to working out every day. The truth is, you don’t need to work out for hours at a time, every single day. All you need to do is move more than you are right now. Plus, it can be beneficial to implement a rest day to give your body time to repair itself.
Consider walking, jogging, stretching, or doing yoga a few times a week to get your heart pumping and your body moving, not only to burn calories but to tell your body you love it and want to take better care of it.
4. Have a consistent sleep schedule
Sleep has a massive effect on our daily activities, mood, energy, hormones, and even the choices that we make. After all, if your energy is low or your mind is not feeling sharp, you may be more likely to grab the donuts your coworkers brought in rather than sticking to the prepped lunch you planned on eating. If you want to start getting back on track, it’s essential to hold yourself to a consistent sleep schedule. Consider implementing a nighttime routine, such as drinking some chamomile tea or reading a book, and limiting screen time late at night. Also, be sure to go to sleep at the same time each night so that you can feel rested in the morning.
5. Manage Your Stress
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that stress can affect your daily activities, mood, energy, and fitness goals. If you are looking to get back on track, stress management is crucial. Consider implementing 5-10 minutes of breathing, meditation, prayer, journaling, walking, or any other way to be present. Carving out specific time to be present in our fast-paced, high-tech world can be uncomfortable but overall beneficial to your mental and physical health.
In conclusion, it may seem intimidating to get back on track after quarantine. With conflicting ideas all over the internet, it can be confusing about where to start. We suggest taking it one step at a time and start implementing one or two of these suggestions above in order to create healthy habits that last.