I’m sure you’ve heard it said before that you have to make fitness a lifestyle in order to stick with it. But what exactly does that mean and how do you go about doing that? I see so many people on social media who promote a fitness centered lifestyle that seems unsustainable and unrealistic for the average person. The truth is that most people don’t want to count their macros every day or eat a one-carb waffle (that tastes horrible by the way). They want to live their lives and be healthy while doing it. And you can! You don’t need to count macros every day or stress when you eat a few too many candy bars. You can enjoy your life and live a healthy lifestyle and fitness doesn’t have to be all encompassing.
First things first, let’s talk about what people mean when they say you have to make a lifestyle change. Typically, when people say this they’re referring to your daily habits. If you’re trying to live a healthier lifestyle, you’ll need to ditch the daily junk food/fast food, soda and other unhealthy foods you’re putting into your body. You’ll want to start going to the gym or doing some sort of exercise regularly and living a more active lifestyle. You’ll want to make changes into your daily routine that you can implement and stick with for the long haul. For example, if your new diet consists of cutting out sugar, carbs, alcohol and dairy, think about if you’ll be able to stick to this for a year. Chances are you’re planning on doing this diet for a few weeks and then going back to your old diet. If this is the case, you’ll likely put the weight back on that you lost during your diet. This is why you need to make it a lifestyle change. When you start making daily habits that benefit your health, you’re more likely to stick with it. So instead of cutting out sugar entirely from your diet, think about cutting back the amount you’re consuming but not totally eliminating it from your diet. This will help you stick with it for a longer period of time and make it a habit to limit your sugar intake.
I know what you’re thinking, “How do I go about making this a lifestyle change… I really don’t want to eat salads and kale chips for the rest of my life…” Well lucky for you, you don’t have to! The reason for making it a lifestyle change, is so you can tailor it to your lifestyle and stick with these changes for the long run. You’ll still be able to indulge every now and then but you’ll overall be making better choices. The same goes for working out/exercising. When people start working out, they tend to overdo it. They commit to going to the gym 5+ a week and then get burnt out and it becomes a chore rather than something they enjoy. If you haven’t worked out in a long time, start with working out 1-2 times a week and increasing your frequency from there.
Take it one day at a time, make small changes, be consistent and before you know it you’ll start seeing results that will make you want to keep going!