I’m not sure what industry is more oversaturated online with people giving their opinions and tips: beauty or fitness. So, after chiming in on beauty stuff a while ago, it’s time I add some health and fitness stuff to the mix. Don’t worry, this will not include me smiling in a perfectly matching workout set with zero sweat and some inspirational quotes. Just gonna dish out some simple hacks and swaps. Will try to keep it short, too.
As in five simple health hacks that have definitely helped me feel better these days…
1: Walk whenever and as much as you can.
My son’s school is within walking distance. (.85 miles each way to be exact) and we’ve been walking to and from school. It’s been a massive blessing, in that it wakes both of us up, helps us get fresh air, and just gets the day started on the right foot. Or left one too.
It’s pretty much gotten me addicted to walking a ton, and it’s definitely helped my mental clarity, makes my body feel less bloated and angry, and my tight jeans that serve as my scale are definitely a little looser too. It’s all funny because I used to think I had to constantly kick my own ass in the cardio department to reap those benefits. But…just needed more steps in a day. Sweet.
I grabbed a little non-Bluetooth pedometer for extra motivation to walk/play and move as much as possible (you can take it off the watch band and keep it in your pocket) and it’s kind of hilarious how walking and moving around, aka something our bodies are built to do naturally and easily, can make a big difference.
So get those steps in. Get up and play with your kid or dog, it feels good.
2: Load up on the protein.
When it comes to eating we’re always told to not eat this or that, which usually makes us crave whatever this or that is. So, here’s something I say to eat a lot of. Protein.
My husband looks like a Greek god and I swear he also lives off of lean grass-fed beef and eggs (and his cholesterol is low). Sooooo after being totally appalled at his titanium-esque will power, I decided to follow suit, and up the protein intake. However, I didn’t eliminate another food group or anything. I just focused on filling up on protein first, which ends up helping you feel more satiated. And boom. You end up craving less of the other stuff.
Easy ways to pump up da protein are Icelandic yogurt ( Try Painterland Sisters – they sent me a case and it’s freaking incredible) Tuna, Salmon, protein bars (always have one from TJ’s in my bag lately), c0ttage cheese, my husband’s go-to…steak, and I walk around eating these precooked chicken breasts from Trader Joe’s like they’re apples or something.
I know how passionate people are about what they will or won’t eat, and what’s good or bad for you, so take this with a grain of salt (which is also good for you, by the way), but just to clarify…protein rocks. Eat it.
3: Weights are your friends.
There are a bazillion videos, posts, and facts about the benefits of weightlifting out there. And I’ll just give my thumbs up to them all. I’ve lifted weights since I was 12 or so, and except for a 6-month span when I was living in France and got kicked out of the gym for trying to sneak in too many times, it’s always been a part of my life. The challenge, the endorphins, the feeling of kicking ass and getting under a bar with a lot of weight. Or knowing I can pull myself up if I’m ever dangling off of a cliff. Ohhh, baby, it’s the best. I even love the soreness.
The good news is there are so many resources online and via social media to get a start on lifting. And it’s not too late. The other good news is it will not make you big. You might get muscles, a perky butt, better posture, and some shoulders. But last time I checked that’s a good thing.
Off the top of my head, I like ATHLEAN-X on youtube and Nicolas Martins on Instagram.
4: Yay for healthy sodas. Or bubbly drinks.
Before I had my son I was a Super Big Gulp full of Diet Coke multiple times a week kinda gal. I also drank liters of diet mountain dew while I was in college. But my college nutrition is a whole other hilarious catastrophe typical of well, the college experience.
Good news: I kicked the habit, and now it’s sparkling mineral water (Hallelujah to ya Gerolsteiner), and the occasional indulgence on plane flights.
But…there are actually some healthy soda alternatives about there that (I think) taste amazing and are a great alternative to the stuff Ronaldo pushes away at press conferences. OLIPOP (I also call it OLIPOOP because of its fiber content) and Alive ancient Mushroom Elixer Adaptogenic teas (go for the Root beer or Lemon-lime) have some great health benefits (especially the mushroom stuff) and are a damn tasty fizzy beverage. My husband even drinks both. Which is a good sign.
5: Swap over productiveness for some sleep.
This has been the most challenging but beneficial thing for me. I’m posting less and maybe have less of a presence online and am definitely not churning out stuff 24/7 because… I am sleeping. Or trying my best to get 7-8 hours a night. It’s a choice that goes against how I’ve wired my brain over the past decade, and at times I feel guilty hitting the sack at 11:30 or 12 each night. But man oh man, the health benefits are substantial. I swear it’s helped my skin a ton, too. And my workouts, mental clarity, and mood. And ironically, productivity. Yay sleep.
I definitely still have the occasional 2 am in the zone work-fests, and my dog is turning more and more nocturnal as she ages which has been interesting. But yeah, sleep helps.
I probably should mention I use a weighted blanket (Love this thing so much I could cry), pop a few magnesium glycinate tablets, and put a pillow that has a silk pillowcase over my eyes (Eye masks feel weird but this doesn’t for some reason.) So, I’m basically in a cocoon (that is nothing even close to being remotely sexy and definitely cracks up my husband.) Find what works for you and soak up those zzzzzs, baby.
Ok, that’s it. If I’d ever do some sort of podcast or place where I could rant without having to go check for a plethora of typos I could go on and on about this stuff.
Hope something in here helps, or at least motivates you to get up, go for a walk, grab a protein bar, chug an OLIPOP, and get some sleep.
Cheers to taking care of our bodies, so we can get out and have some adventures while feeling freaking fantastic, my friends.