June 23, 2015

5 sure-fire ways to stay happy & healthy!

1. Make a Plan!
Every Sunday night, after a day of rest, relaxation and peace, I get out my planner and schedule out my next week. I highlight my kids' tasks in different colors so it's easy to visualize. I decide what workouts I will do, what time I will do them each day, and what meals I will be eating. As I make my plan, I remind myself WHY I am doing these things. So I can be happier, healthier and more productive. I hate that struggle at 5pm when I haven't planned out dinner, so I just lay out the cereal and tell the kids to have at-it. (I'm not the only one who does this, right?) I remind myself that when I schedule my workouts, I must make them as non-negotiable as everything else on my schedule. I wouldn't cancel a work meeting or a lunch with friends. Why would I cancel a date I have with myself? I am that important! I must also add, that if you miss a workout, your week isn't ruined! Just jump back in the next day. *When you fail to plan, you plan to fail!*

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2. Exercise for the High! 

"Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people don't shoot their husbands, they just don't!" Remember this line from Legally Blonde? Well, it's actually scientifically proven that physical activity has a direct chemical impact on your brain. When we work out, important hormones & chemicals like endorphins, norepinephrine and serotonin are released that help us to feel happy, make good choices and focus better. Antidepressants help to release these same chemicals that are boosted by exercise!

Set a goal to get at least 20 minutes of exercise in each day! If you are a member of a gym, do 10 minutes on a cardio machine and 10 minutes focusing on your abs 2-3 days a week. Make sure you are also incorporating weights 2-3 times a week as well! HERE's a great article about why women should lift weights! If you are not a member of a gym, or have gym-a-phobia like me, check out this awesome On Demand program that gives you access to tons of workout programs that you can do from home!! You've heard of p90x & insanity, right? What about Turbo Fire & ChaLEAN extreme? There truly is a workout for everyone, depending on your fitness level and what you enjoy doing! Studies show that your workout will be more effective if you are enjoying your workout. Love to dance? -there's a program for you! Enjoy circuit training? -there's a program for you. Need something fast & effective? -yup, there's a program like that, too! Don't just endure your workout, enjoy it!!  

If you would like to try a FREE 30 day Club Membership with On Demand access, you can sign up HERE! http://teambeachbody.com/tbbsignup/-/tbbsignup/club?referringrepid=176301

3. Don't cheat, TREAT!

I used to sneak a cupcake in the middle of the night. True story. I considered it something that was "wrong" and of course it tasted so good until the last bite when I was left with a stomach ache and an overwhelming amount of guilt. This could've led me into a downward spiral of eating disorders & depression, but I recognized that what I was doing wasn't helping anything or anyone. I was sick and tired of being sick and tired!!
Instead of dieting, use the law of moderation. I never want to tell myself that a certain food or food group is off limits. I once ate gluten free for a month and although I lost 10 lbs, I was tortured by nightmares of pizza, breadsticks, cookies, bagels, cake and pasta. I found out that I didn't have a gluten intolerance, but I did psych myself out and it wasn't a pleasant experience!
Instead of telling yourself you aren't allowed to eat Oreos, how about you get 3 of them with a glass of almond milk after the end of a productive week? I love the 80/20 rule. 80% healthy, 20% other.
And don't have the mind set that you are cheating, consider it a treat! But you have to earn it. Make sure you have a plan to be physically active & eat healthy 80% of the time (See #1 & 2)!

4. Do Something that makes you happy EVERYDAY!

This goes a long way if you are struggling to keep the gray clouds away. Figure out what your hobbies are, what needs you have, and make sure that you schedule time for yourself. Love getting pampered? schedule yourself a pedicure monthly. Need girl time to keep your head afloat? plan to go out to breakfast, brunch, lunch or a park day with your friends every week. A little adult conversation goes a long way when you are home taking care of little ones all day.

Positive Affirmations is another way to help yourself get through a hard time. I truly believe that the thoughts we are thinking and the words we are speaking all impact our state of mind. I love to say, "you is smart, you is beautiful, you is kind" just like from The Help! If I can speak positive thoughts to my kids, I can speak positive words to myself, too.
"I am an inspirational person. I am a great mom. I am a leader. I make good choices. I am creative. I am kind. I have a beautiful family."

Reading books that help with personal development and positive thinking is another great way to help change your mindset during hard times. I recommend doing this in the morning each day, before anyone else wakes up, so you can start out your day with something uplifting to help you feel positive and happy!

*I want to share an experience from a time that I was really struggling. I had just had my 2nd baby and everything went wrong with this labor & delivery. I ended up having an emergency c-section with him and was really having a hard time. I had a huge up & down scar that cut through ALL my abdominal muscles so my body was really hurting, plus my uterus tore during the surgery so I was given a blood transfusion because of the blood loss. Not only was I in a lot of pain, I was very weak too. I had an almost 2 year old at home and a newborn and I was a hot mess! Even 5 months later, I was still suffering; lack of sleep, crazy hormones, postpartum depression, and post-traumatic stress were really taking a toll on me. I got to the point where I didn't know what else I could do to help myself (yet looking back I realize now I wasn't doing ANY of the things I should've been doing to help myself physically, like #1-4) but one day, I had a thought. "I need someone to make me feel better. But I can't ask for help. Why don't I think of someone else that may be in need of some love and do that for them??" It was definitely an inspired revelation, and from that day forward, my view of service has drastically changed. I set a goal to help one person every day. I didn't know what they needed, so I just did for someone else what I needed myself. One day when I should've been cleaning my kitchen, I ran across to my neighbors house, snuck in (I had a key!) and did her dishes. I giggled the whole time, then ran home and did my own dishes. My happiness level spiked. The next day, I wrote a note to an old friend telling her how much she meant to me.

At the end of the week, I had an amazing experience that reminded me that the Lord is aware of our needs and the needs of others. He wants us to be happy. He wants us to use our experiences to bless the lives of others, and serve in a way that remind us how special and loved we truly are!!

5. Get an accountability partner!! 

This makes all the difference for me. If I am struggling to get my workouts in, I invite a friend to come over and do them with me. I'm not about to cancel on my friend, and when she shows up at my door all laced up, it's a lot harder to find an excuse to not do it. If working out with a friend isn't an option, find someone to be your accountability partner! Join our challenge group that will require you to check in daily, show progress, and provide support to help you reach your goals. I LOVE my challenge group and the girls in our private group are so uplifting, motivational and supportive! We have little mini challenges, celebrate Flex Friday, rejoice together our victories and uplift each other through our struggles. If you find yourself constantly quitting, this just might be what you're missing! I can help you get partnered up with someone who will help you push yourself harder, commit to your workouts, eat cleaner, and provide the accountability we all need to stay focused and reach your goals! Click the link below to join!
~~Together is always better!~~
Apply to join our Super Fit Challenge here!! http://goo.gl/forms/m0X0epueZ9

I would LOVE to hear from you! Do you have a health tip? 
Would you love a clean eating meal plan? Need some help & support to reach your goals? 
Leave me a comment and I'd love to help you out!!

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