It’s the first Monday of 2023 so the first one of the new year. I want to start it off by looking at healthy habits and lifestyle changes. I don’t believe in diets and fads and never have or will. A healthy habit goes a long way to a healthy lifestyle and that’s what I champion. I’m not perfect myself and I struggle with maintaining a healthy lifestyle and healthy habits. I have to wear a lot of hats on a daily basis from business owner to employee, girlfriend, sister, daughter, friend, and confidante. It’s a lot and for every hat, I have to wear there are many more underneath it. So it can become overwhelming and it also means that trying to keep up with a healthy lifestyle can be hard at times. So what I’m trying to say is that I get it if you feel this way because I do too.

With that being said you can make small changes to your habits that in the long run can bring about a long-term healthy lifestyle. A lot of people think the new year means weight loss, dieting, and exercising like a maniac to look good. But it doesn’t because things like that are actually damaging to your mental health and in turn your physical health. Nobody NEEDS to look a certain way (though we might want to). Society dictates what we should look like but the only opinion that matters about us is ourselves. One of my favorite quotes is “everyone else’s opinion is none of your business. If you want to look and feel a certain way to make you happy then by all means I say go for it but I want to make sure you do it the right way. The healthy way for your body, your spirit, and your mind. At JH Fitness I don’t believe in the drop a dress size or losing two stone in 12 weeks or similar weight loss schemes. They may make a difference to you in the short term but they aren’t easy to maintain long term and can set you back mentally which makes it so much harder to take a step forward again when you get back into the right mindset again. They can be particularly damaging for people who suffer from a mental health illness like depression or anorexia for example. Anyone peddling these types of weight loss schemes is looking for a get-rich-quick and they don’t care about your mental well-being at the end of it or how you’ll cope going forward once it’s done. We at JH Fitness care about what’s inside and out and we know that psychology is the biggest part for anyone who wants to make lifestyle changes. Mindset is a HUGE part of any kind of change whether that be physical, emotional or mental. To make a change you need to be in the right mindset to do it and more often than not we start out with one needed but life gets in the way. We are taken over by the stresses and strains of life and a positive mindset can quickly turn to a negative one and we fall back into bad habits because they are easy.

So for those struggling to get into the right mindset or who want to take small baby steps you can still do it. Consistency is key and while it might sound hard to stay consistent it can be easier than you think. Changing habits can be something as simple as drinking a little more water or going to bed an hour earlier. Small simple healthy habits go a long way to making a difference and helping you towards a healthy lifestyle. And you don’t have to give up everything you love and enjoy and that makes you feel good. Just take everything in moderation. Even things like reducing portion sizes a little and snacking on processed sugars can make a big difference and make you feel better inside and out. I personally love chocolate and I’ve tried so many times to give it up or stop eating it altogether but all that does is make me feel unhappy. I then crave it more and end up eating way more than I would have if I’d just eaten it in moderation. Life is about balance and it’s finding a balance that makes you happy AND healthy!

So to help you out I’ve made a little list of five super simple lifestyle changes that are easy to follow to help you work toward a goal of improving your lifestyle. These small changes are easier than you think to implement into your daily routine and staying consistent with them will bring about a huge change. It won’t be overnight or even in a week or a month but being consistent over a longer period of time will bring results. The other important thing is when it comes to exercise that if you choose to work out, find something you love. You are more likely to stick to a workout regime if you enjoy what you do. For me, I hate being in the gym or running on a treadmill. I used to do it for years because I didn’t know any better. Then I found Zumba and in turn dance fitness in general and since then I fell in LOVE with exercise. I adore fitness now and I look forward to going to my classes both as a participant and an instructor. I love the feeling of the happy endorphins pumping through my veins after class having got lost in the music and movement. I fell in love with that feeling I get afterwards which is amazing because it doesn’t feel like exercise. It’s just fun. So try out different forms of exercise and find one you enjoy. It will stop feeling like a chore and you’ll be more consistent in keeping up with it. Again it will go a long way to helping with those healthy habits and a healthy lifestyle.

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