I am not a fan of the word diet. I rarely use it in the context that means weight loss and this post is not about that. This blog and this post is about considering what you need to be your healthiest version of you. Sometimes the New Year provides the perfect window to ask yourself what don’t I like about what I am doing right now? What do I need to change? Sometimes the answer is I need a better fitness routine and I need a diet makeover.
This past year, in the month of September I added high blood pressure to my list of health concerns. I live in a house where there is never a dull moment. I don’t mind that, but the reality is that parenting kids with special needs has been hard on my health. When we adopted our children I made a big commitment to getting fit. So did my husband. We joined the YMCA as a family and we worked out often, sometimes together and sometimes squeezing in a half hour when the kids did swimming lessons. The fitness part is crucial. If I am not fit, I don’t feel good. I struggle with energy and my immune system is impaired when I don’t exercise. So what’s the issue? Well this past year I fell off the fitness wagon pretty much as soon as school started back. The summer was pretty decent and I maintained an exercise routine that I enjoyed that took me out of doors many days.
However, school also meant an increase in workload here at my business and frankly I just didn’t have time to squeeze in the workouts anymore. My travel increased for work. My stress increased. And so did my blood pressure. In addition my diet slid badly. It is a strange reality of work at home life that I don’t eat well when working at home. So I have myself to blame for that one. I work five giant steps from the kitchen and yet I skip meals and work through lunch and then I am starving by dinner. I snack and I love sugar and salt. So, what have I done about that? Well, in December I wrote about my changing fitness and health plan prompted by the high blood pressure readings. I have also been logging my food habits. I resisted that because I hate doing logs. But a friend reminded me it’s the only really consistent and reliable way to start a food makeover. All of this has meant that I have made some great changes and I see some results already. I am not eating salt on anything. I have dropped the salt and vinegar chips. I am trying with sugar too, but that one is the hardest for me. I have the worst sweet tooth ever. I have also dramatically trimmed my caffeine intake. So, now is it going? Well I know I still need to get a better handle on stress in my life. To some degree I control my reaction to stress, but I don’t control the amount life throws at me. Right now, I focus on the things I can control about high blood pressure and health – my fitness routine, activity level and food makeover.
While I am on this journey, I know many others are also likely to be embracing a similar commitment in January. So, I wanted to offer a quick gift to help you with your food makeover. This daily log is free. You can right click on it and save and print. Good Luck!
What helps you to change bad eating habits? Have you ever tried a daily food log?