Goal Setting Tips and Daily Motivation

I’ve been looking for an opportunity to share this fabulous blog, and a full schedule today is just the reason I needed. Enjoy!

Written by Kristin Barton Cuthriell, M.Ed, MSW, LCSW

People often say that motivation doesn’t last.  Well, neither does bathing, that’s why we recommend it daily. –Zig Zigler



What can you do to daily motivate yourself?

When I was in college, my friends and I sat and watched Oprah Winfrey wheel a wagon of fat out onto the stage of her television show to illustrate how much weight she had lost.  It was at that moment that my girlfriends and I became more determined than ever to get healthy.  The kitchen, in the small apartment that we shared, was stocked full of chips, salsa, cheese, and, of course, oodles of noodles, the inexpensive staple that kept many college students alive.

Read more  Goal Setting Tips and Daily Motivation.

Eleven Tips for Creating a Healthy Body and Happy Life

In her book, The Happiness Project, Gretchen Rubin sets out a happiness manifesto that lists 17 “splendid truths” about happiness—and truly about life. Number five on the list? “Your body matters.”

In other words, if your body doesn’t feel good, it’s much more challenging to be happy.

Overall, the recipe for a good-feeling body is pretty simple—think mostly positive anabolic thoughts (about your life and body), eat foods high in anabolic energy, drink plenty of water, move your body regularly, and get adequate sleep. Simple, perhaps, but not always easy.

One of those that is challenging for a lot of people is moving your body regularly. Rubin lists “Nine tips to stick to a schedule of regular exercise” that I thought were worth sharing.

1. Always exercise on Mondays.

2. Never skip exercising for two days in a row.

3. Don’t link exercise to weight loss. Exercise for sanity not vanity.

4. Give yourself credit for the smallest effort.

(This is a tip that I particularly emphasis with my clients when they are getting started with exercise. Park at the far end of the lot and walk? Count it! Vacuum with vigor so you broke a sweat? Count it! Take the stairs instead of the elevator? Count it! Those wins add up fast and build momentum towards doing more and more.)

5. Think about context. Do you hate the loud music in your gym? Re-think your choices.

6. Exercise frequently. If you you’re staying in shape by playing pick-up basketball, you should be playing four to five times a week.

7. If you don’t have time to exercise and take a shower, find exercise where you don’t need to shower afterward.

8. Spend money to make exercising more pleasant. Exercise is a high life priority, so this is the place to splurge a bit if that helps.

9. Remember: belonging to a gym doesn’t mean you go to the gym, and just because you go to the gym, and just because you were in shape in college doesn’t mean you’re in shape now.

All of these are wonderful and absolutely right on, but I would add two more.

10. Let go of the words “exercise” or “working out” if they have negative connotations for you. Instead, move your body with intensity.

11. Pick a way to move your body that you enjoy. The best exercise is the one you enjoy enough to do consistently.

Just consistently making those small decisions to eat healthy foods and move your body pays off so much—to your health and happiness. What can you do today to act in accordance with the “splendid truth” that your body matters?

Together we can do it!


Photo www.freedigitalphotos.net

Get Back on Track After Thanksgiving Treats

I ate more than usual over this four-day Thanksgiving holiday weekend, and I can tell. My jeans are a little tighter and I am feeling bloated.

The good news is I know that this is temporary and that with a little focus and consciousness today, I can easily get back on track.

The other good news is that I could have been so much worse! Because my parents, who were visiting, are health-conscious, too, we were able to pare down the holiday menu and make some smarter choices. My Mom made the stuffing with toasted Ezekiel bread and I mashed the sweet potatoes with only a little fresh orange juice and grated rind. Both were delicious and much better for us than the traditional recipes.

I also got in all my planned workouts, which made a huge difference in my motivation this morning when the alarm went off way before the sun came up.

Where I need to refocus is on portion size, and on using what Dr. Judith Beck calls my resistance muscle where snacks and sweets are concerned. While the olives, cheese, and cashews I was indulging in are healthy, they are also high in fat and salt. And I have found in the past, that sugar can trigger cravings that have sent my eating spiraling out of control. I am so glad we threw away the rest of the pumpkin pie last night!

To help get back on track, I have planned out what I am going to eat today, and I will be checking in with my accountability group, Fabulous Friends, on http://www.transformation.com/.

Here are some things you can do stay on track—and get back on track, if necessary—with holiday eating:

  • Where you have control over the menu, provide healthy foods.
  • Forgive yourself if you do indulge.
  • Acknowledge and celebrate where you are successful.
  • Figure out what you need to do to get back on track.
  • Create a plan that you can stick to.
  • Remove temptation—throw, give, or put away those things that trigger overeating.
  • Exercise your resistance muscle and just say “No” to yourself.
  • Reach out for support to a friend, coach, or accountability group.
  • Remind yourself of all the reasons you do want to feel great on January 2nd.

It is not the end of the world if you ate more than usual over the holiday weekend. It’s over and done with. Today is a new day to make new choices that better align with who you want to be.

Together we can do it!