5 Daily Habits That Have Helped Me Get Fit

by Charlene Flanagan
I Make It A Point To Move
I Make It A Point To Sleep For At Least 7 Hours
I Drink Plenty Of Water
I Plan My Meals Ahead
I Acknowledge That Fitness Is Not A Destination

I don’t try to rationalize why I began my fitness journey. All I know is that five months ago, I didn’t quite like my reflection in the mirror and after having now lost close to 51lbs, it's no longer about weight loss. I want to strive to live a healthy life, day after day, taking each moment as it comes.

Sure, the weight loss definitely gave a boost to my confidence and I can finally say I look great in dresses again, but all of this was achieved with some simple changes (not 2-hour workouts in the gym). I understand we all have different body types and metabolic rates but maybe some tricks I employed could work for you, too. Hey, what do you have to lose save for a few pounds?:

1. I Make It A Point To Move
Sure, the gym or yoga class can provide you a regimented plan but so can simple recreational activities like walking, swimming, cycling, or playing sports. They help build strength and stamina plus, they're a whole lot of fun so you're more likely to stick with the activity. To put it plainly, I’m making it a point to get off my ass and on my feet, every single chance I get!

2. I Make It A Point To Sleep For At Least 7 Hours 
I read a study which said that unexplainable weight gain can often times be traced back to lack of sleep. It has a direct impact on your eating habits because it hinders the hormone that controls your appetite. Also, when in a state of unregulated fatigue, the stress hormone cortisol entices the reward sectors of the brain that yearn food. This leads to impulse cravings for all the wrong foods. Now luckily, keeping my body and mind active all day long ensures I get to bed at a decent hour. I’ve found that it’s a great way to wake up with a clear mind and well-rested body that's not mindlessly seeking out food.

3. I Drink Plenty Of Water
The advice feels overrated because maybe it's too simplistic; drink more water, lose more weight. Well, I personally try and drink about 4 liters a day. It helps keep me hydrated so I have more energy and the water aids digestion and regulates bowel movements. Also, the longing for food often times is not because you're hungry, it's because you're thirsty. Drinking water can satisfy those cravings. 

4. I Plan My Meals Ahead 
Staying fit and keeping my weight down doesn’t mean I've been starving myself. The fact is, I eat when I’m hungry and I make note of my calories. The trick that worked best for me to put this plan in action was to start planning my meals ahead. Yes, it does involve a bit of math and preparedness but when the practice helps tip the scales in your favor, this is one habit you’ll be thankful for. Besides, I love my food and it gives me something to look forward to, considering I know exactly what I’m getting and how much of it; remember, portion control is key! Stephanie Harris-uyidi, host of The Posh Pescatarian offers meal planning and cooking tips that will revelutionaize your week. 

5. I Acknowledge That Fitness Is Not A Destination
Let’s not kid ourselves—most of us get on a weight loss program because we have a special event coming up—could be a wedding, a looming birthday, whatever. And while crash diets do have their immediate benefits, as a sustainable fitness program, they fall flat. What I’ve come to realize is that people don’t get fit overnight. They work hard at it every day, and eventually reap the benefits that are long-lasting. Why? It’s because they don’t look at it as an 'end' goal, but rather as an evergreen lifestyle change. That’s what worked for me and maybe the mindshift could help you as well.

The fact remains, we live in a world where time is fleeting because we’ve packed in so much to do and we don’t really have any time left for ourselves. This is one way I reclaimed that “me time” and I have to admit, it’s been one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Don’t believe me? Maybe you should try it yourself.

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