Updated: Oct 28, 2021
Making the decision to finally take charge of your health can be quite daunting. This is often because the decision is attached to a huge goal such as losing a certain amount of weight in a specified amount of time, and the fear of missing the target can be discouraging. However it's important to remember that it will be a lifelong journey with peaks and troughs, and that what really matters is that you build on it little by little, brick by brick, and commit to staying the course every day. In this post I will share some staples that anchor me on my personal journey and hope they will be useful to you too.
Remember you're not in competition with anyone, not even yourself: Choosing to care for your physical and mental health is not a contest! It is a way of life and tool to help you move more freely and comfortably through the world. Stay focused on goals such as building strength, clear breathing, blood sugar regulation and maintaining a healthy heart. These will help you live a fuller, richer life, more tailored to your individual happiness
Learn about Macro- and Micronutrients: Understanding the very basic science behind food and how it’s processed by your body will make it easier to make healthy, balanced meal choices. Macronutrients include Protein, Carbs, Fat and Vegetables which are essential for making up a balanced diet while Micronutrients refer to vitamins and minerals found in food, herbs, spices and sometimes supplements. I will talk about these in more detail in a future post however having even a surface level understanding of these food groups can help at the start of your journey
Find ways to move that you enjoy and start there: There's no need to head to the gym after months or even years of inactivity and jump straight into an hour of intense cardio and an hour of heavy weights! Cardio and strength-training are extremely important for your health however it will be easier to make it a lifestyle if you first find fun ways to get your heart rate up such as dancing, Zumba classes, or simply taking a walk. Slowly work your way up to more and more challenging activities but focus on fun first to get you in the groove of things. Remember, you’re not in a contest!
Add or Substitute certain food items in your meals: Instead of cutting out jollof rice entirely, start by cooking it with seasoned green vegetables such as broccoli, spinach or ugwu (pumpkin leaf) such that half the meal is jollof and half the meal is veggies. Then slowly work to reduce your carb portion to a handful and double the portion of veggies in the long run. This will help curb yo-yo dieting as you won't feel so completely deprived of a food you love!
Check in with all other aspects of your life that are not directly related to food or exercise. Are you happy? Does your job or career give you a sense of purpose or are you stuck in a dead-end job you despise? How are your friendships and intimate relationships? How is your relationship with family? Does your spiritual practice give you hope, joy and a sense of meaning? Take the time to inspect all these facets of your life and see how they're influencing your overall health
With these few tips you’re well on your way to begin a steady, more nuanced and realistic journey to great health! I know that even with this it could still seem intimidating and that’s why I’m also here to help! Having a health coach guide you through this process can be very empowering until you’re ready to take the training wheels off. So feel free to reach out to me via this booking form to see how I could be of help as you take charge of your life and health. I can’t wait to hear from you!