• Week 8 Challenge: Stay On Track

    February 14, 2014

    It’s the final week of the Get Healthy, Stay Healthy Challenge! Thanks to everyone has who participated so far!

    If you missed the challenge, you can always hop in and do all 8 weeks on your own, or pick and choose challenges based on the areas that you want to improve. The best thing about this challenge is that it is totally customizable and can be adjusted based on your own personal preferences. There’s no right way to live a healthy life, so don’t think you need to follow a specific diet or rules to get there. Do your own thing, make small changes to your current lifestyle, and learn what works best for YOU.

    Success

    That said, the final week’s challenge is staying on track and identifying ways to get yourself back on track if you fall off the health wagon. We all go through periods of when we’re super healthy, but then slack on our habits—myself included! I honestly think it’s part of healthy living, but, of course, you want to be more ON track than off track.

    Here are my top tips for staying and getting back on track:

    Even though I’ve maintained my weight for many years now, there are times when I fall off of the healthy-eating-and-exercise wagon. Most of the time, it’s not too difficult for me to stick with my healthy habits, but when I come home from an indulgent vacation or start to favor TV time over exercise time, it usually begins a downward spiral, which, not surprisingly, leaves me with some not-so-healthy habits. (Hey, sometimes old habits are hard to break!)

    Slipping up every once in a while isn’t a big deal, but when the pounds start to creep on, I know I need to get back on track with my eating and exercise. Here’s how I veer back on course when my healthy habits start to slip.

    Don’t dwell on the past

    Instead of dwelling on the mistakes I made in the past, I focus my attention on the future. If I’ve gained a few pounds, I remember that they aren’t permanent. If I’ve indulged a little too much or skipped too many sweat sessions, I don’t get down on myself. Beating myself up about mistakes I’ve made won’t help me eat healthier or exercise more, so I make a mental note to work hard and move forward with my health and fitness goals.

    Make a change NOW

    Instead of waiting to start a diet or new exercise routine on Monday, I make a change right away. Some of my favorites: I throw on my sneakers for a brisk walk around the block, I search for healthy recipes on the internet, or plan my workouts for the week. Jump-starting right away boosts my motivation to get on track and keeps me from falling further into bad habits that got me off course in the first place.

    Schedule your workouts like appointments

    I use my personal calendar to keep me organized with all aspects of my life– from project deadlines to doctor’s appointments to grocery lists and social events. I record everything in my calendar, including my workouts. On Sunday afternoons, I spend some time scheduling my workouts for the week, just like I would with any other obligation. I usually pick a couple of group exercise classes and schedule them like appointments that I can’t miss. Seeing my week all laid out with plenty of time for exercise helps me get back on track with my workouts.

    Use a little bribery

    I’ve recently discovered one of the best ways to motivate myself is with a little bribery, especially when it comes to my workouts. For example, if I buy a cute workout top or download a few new songs onto my iPod, it always seems to motivate me to exercise. And, hey, if that’s what it takes to get me back to the gym, I consider it money well spent!

    Read health blogs for inspiration

    When I need some help getting back on track, I read some of my favorite health blogs for inspiration. I almost always find a recipe, new workout, or some words of advice that makes me want to change my tune. Plus, seeing others striving to be their healthiest motivates me to do the same.

    Or better yet…

    Start your own health blog

    I started Carrots ‘N’ Cake to keep me accountable during the months leading up to my wedding, so starting with my very first post, I announced to my readers what I wanted to accomplish (toning up and looking great in my white dress). Sharing my experiences on the Internet makes me accountable to my family, friends, and even strangers, so I stay on track with my health goals. And, bonus: my blog readers provide me with constant support and motivation– they’re a virtual support group whenever I need it!

    Use your social networks for motivation

    In addition to my blog readers, sending out a message on Twitter or Facebook to my followers can also help spur some motivation to get myself back on track. There’s been more than one occasion when I’ve wanted to blow off a workout, but my Twitter friends come to my rescue to encourage me to get my sweat on!

    Remember consistency is key

    Getting off track every once in awhile isn’t a big deal, but lots of slipups can really add up, so I try to keep this in mind when I want to get myself back on track. I know if I want to see results, I need to be consistent with my meals and workouts. And, of course, I don’t want to backtrack with my progress, so I remind myself that the little things really do add up, which gives me the motivation I need to get back (and stay!) on track.

    One Healthy Meal at a Time! You can do it! #LighthouseHealth www.LighthouseHealth.com

    In case you missed them, here are all 8 of the challenges:

    Question of the Day

    How you do get yourself back on track when you fall of the healthy living wagon?

    Pin It

    { 26 comments… read them below or add one }

    Katie @ Peace Love and Oats February 14, 2014 at 7:09 am

    Planning is key! I’m trying to do meal prep on Sundays and I find that I’m so much better about getting in workouts when I put them on my calendar

    Reply

    Jackie February 14, 2014 at 7:19 am

    These tips are all so true! Love it!

    Reply

    Ashley @ Snow Cream and Syrup February 14, 2014 at 7:38 am

    I think it can also be helpful to look back on mistakes, especially mistakes that I keep making, to see if there’s a pattern. For example, I usually indulge the most when we get home late in the day and I’ve had a tough workout that day. So knowing what my triggers are helps me be prepared to meet them with a plan next time – having a healthy meal in the freezer, or just exercising more self control.

    Reply

    Kim @ Hungry Healthy Girl February 14, 2014 at 7:39 am

    Great tips! I especially like and use the “get started now” and “set workouts like appointments”. We all get off track now and then, the important thing is to get back on.

    Reply

    Madison February 14, 2014 at 7:45 am

    I love the “schedule the workout like appointments.” That is what I do because I’m less likely to miss an “appointment.”

    Happy Valentine’s Day!

    Reply

    Abi@AbsofSteel February 14, 2014 at 7:59 am

    This challenge works perfectly since I’m already trying to do this now. I usually try to start my day off healthy. I find that if I have a healthy breakfast I’m more inclined to keep it up for the rest of my eating throughout the day. Also eating lots of veggies makes me feel good.

    Reply

    Rhiannon @ Bound to be a Buckeye February 14, 2014 at 8:02 am

    I completely agree that reading health blogs keeps me motivated. It’s kind of like surrounding yourself with “good” friends in the cyber world =) When I see what all of you are doing, I want to keep up my routine too.

    Reply

    Hayley @healthyregards February 14, 2014 at 8:17 am

    A big one for me is starting the day healthy! That means lots of water, a healthy breakfast and a workout. Doing these things in the morning set me up to make healthy choices all day!

    Reply

    Sara @ LovingOnTheRun February 14, 2014 at 8:26 am

    I think it is just about setting your mind too. It is easy when we get busy to lose track, we all do it. But I like to write myself notes and encouragement and document my efforts that way i can see how I am doing.

    Reply

    Elizabeth @ Positive Change February 14, 2014 at 8:40 am

    Great tips! I love reading healthy living blogs as well to keep on track because no matter what I can always find something that is inspiring to me! For me exercise is really important and when I get in a really good sweat session, like a really good session, it motivates me so much!

    Reply

    Olavi February 14, 2014 at 8:43 am

    “Success is the sum of small efforts” – This CANNOT be more true… every time I slipped off track, it was with something small. Seriously – I can’t remember any time in my life that I would have found myself accidently quiting my gym or something. :-)

    So I suppose it’s appropriate to add that “failure is the sum of small defeats”.

    Reply

    Alissa @ Eat Clean Beauty Queen February 14, 2014 at 8:53 am

    This is great advice! I’ve fallen off track a little bit this week as we are in the process of moving and don’t have the ability to cook healthier foods at home (no pots and pans!). I needed this little boost this morning to head to the gym and remember that salads and fresh juices can be taken to go just as easily as unhealthy foods.

    Reply

    Katie @ Talk Less, Say More February 14, 2014 at 9:11 am

    I always turn to my favorite healthy living and fitness blogs to help re-inspire my health. That’s one of the great things about there being so many out there, there’s always someone who’s story we can relate to and be inspired by.

    Reply

    Katie February 14, 2014 at 9:25 am

    Hi! I’m a new reader trying to get inspired to start my own journey. Do you have any great blogs that you recommend? Thanks!

    Reply

    Tina February 14, 2014 at 9:39 am

    I read quite a few. What are your interests?

    Reply

    Megan @ The Skinny-Life February 14, 2014 at 10:52 am

    It’s refreshing to hear someone else say that they fall off the wagon occassionally too. I lost 80 pounds 4 years ago and there are times my eating gets out of control and I freak out temporarily that I’m going to gain all that weight back. I wish I could stop thinking that. It helps knowing I’m not alone.

    Reply

    Cassie February 14, 2014 at 12:13 pm

    @Megan @ The Skinny-Life: Megan- I just recently a large amount of weight too, and I go through the same thing! It is scary to go from a place where what you ate everyday wasn’t really a second though, to now having to make much more calculated decisions. Some days I wonder why I can’t just be “normal” like everyone else, and eat what I want, but at the end of the day, I always feel good when I make healthier choices for my body. On the days where I go off the wagon, I also get nervous and think “oh great, I am going to gain it all back.” This blog post definitely helped me, as it seems to have helped you. I think the one thing that keeps me going is knowing that I am (hopefully) strong enough to not let things go back to the way they were before. I have found that reading blogs like CNC and others helps keep me accountable. Good luck on your continued journey, and thank you Tina for this awesome post!!

    Reply

    michelle kim February 14, 2014 at 11:35 am

    I also like to go one meal and one workout at a time. Usually, waking up in the morning gives me a nice fresh start to the day, and I can let go of what happened the previous day a bit better.
    I also started a blog to keep me accountable and share about my eating disorder issues… I have not relapsed in over two years (which is when I started the blog!).

    Reply

    Sarah @ Sweet Miles February 14, 2014 at 11:53 am

    I just try to look past it and start fresh the next day, or if it’s a weekend and I’m feeling frustrated, start over first thing on Monday and not stress about it all weekend!

    Reply

    Afton at My Virtual Mission February 14, 2014 at 12:09 pm

    Love the tip “Schedule your workouts like appointments”. We have to treat it just like any other commitment we have. Awesome post.

    Reply

    steph February 14, 2014 at 12:28 pm

    this was the perfect thing for me to read this morning.
    i recently fell off the train track, so to speak, and im trying to make an effort to get back into it before i get stuck.
    thank you for the encouragement. sometimes its hard to believe yourself that small steps really will make a change

    Reply

    Stephanie @ Whole Health Dork February 14, 2014 at 1:49 pm

    I try to remind myself that one unhealthy action does not need to beget another unhealthy one. That is, you know how sometimes you eat a little much and then figure the whole day is wasted because you blew it, so you might as well keep making unhealthy decisions all day? I try to reign myself back in and remind myself how much better I’ll feel if I just get back on track right away.

    Thanks for sharing. Couldn’t agree more making a change NOW and scheduling workouts like appointments. I do that with myself and think they’re great ideas for everyone!

    Reply

    Tricia @ Balance In Progress February 14, 2014 at 3:50 pm

    I usually get back on track by getting back to planning and prepping. The way my week goes hugely rests on how well prepared I was with food plans and work out plans.

    Reply

    Livi February 15, 2014 at 6:13 am

    I try to add back in more vegetables/healthy food so I don’t want the bad stuff as much!

    Reply

    Jillian @ Baby Doodah! February 15, 2014 at 7:24 am

    Bribery always works for me!! The only time I have to work out is in the mornings, or on my lunch…mornings are SUPER tough to get up and out the door (especially now with it being so cold), but a sure fire way to get me to the gym is by telling myself if I go, I can stop by Starbucks for a Venti Americano on my way home.

    Works every time!!

    Reply

    Kammie @ Sensual Appeal February 15, 2014 at 1:47 pm

    Great tips! And I love the quotes!

    Reply

    Leave a Comment

    { 3 trackbacks }

    Previous post:

    Next post: