Have you ever heard the phrase that “consistency is key”? I bet you’ve been familiar with this statement being repeated over and over again. Of course, this applies to everything in life, from developing a skill, being good at work, or even in relationships. Now, as humans beings, we all sometimes face that difficult challenge of keeping up with consistency in anything we do. You and I go through different changes, transitions and even obstacles. But you know what? When it comes to healthy lifestyle, you don’t have to struggle to be consistent. The reason is because maintaining a healthy lifestyle is a long term goal.
How do I manage to stay consistent with my health? Well, you see, maintaining a healthy lifestyle should not be a hurdle for you. You should be able to enjoy being healthy, anyways. You might say, well, it’s easier said than done, especially if you’ve been going through some type of issue like losing weight, keeping your blood cholesterol down or even being active with a busy schedule. Well, let me tell you, at the beginning, it may not be easy as just picking up a pen, but it’s certainly not that hard either. I will share with you my top secrets to stay consistent and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. These strategies have worked wonders for me, and they can for you too.
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle: How to start
Work on letting go of old bad habits
Probably this is the hardest part that is holding you back to remain consistent with your health. And I will say that this also affects us in other areas of our life. To give you an example, I used to hold on to things that would not help me progress at all in my life. One of those behaviors was being negative all the time. Of course, this is not something that you develop immediately, it does take time. However, once you acknowledge what’s going on in your life that you need to change, you will manage your habits differently.
Therefore, I encourage you to do the same. Let’s be specific now about eating lifestyle. If you want to lose weight, for example, you can’t keep preparing your meals the same exact way, or keep eating at the same fast food restaurants regularly. There must be some changes in order to see results. Another good example is smoking or abusing of alcohol. Or think about not making any exercise at all. The key here is to identify what habits are keeping you back when going towards maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and then start working on the.
Organize yourself by setting real goals and expectations
Try not to go wrong here. You have to be honest with yourself. Setting goals and expectations is something that must come from within. It sometimes becomes confusing, especially these days when we see so much marketing information on social media and the press. Constant sales of products, plus body image expectations can make us aim at doing the same thing. This can be unrealistic.
Let’s go back to the example of losing weight. There are tons of strategies and products sold everywhere, tempting people to even fall into anxiety and deep desire to make changes fast. However, you must assess your own life and personal goals before trying to go for something that might not fit for you. I always recommend evaluating every program you see and seek professional advice from a certified nutritionist that can truly help you the right way. The bottom line is this, don’t compare yourself to nobody else, nor set your goals based on other people’s desires of you. I must emphasize on this, because many people go through body image issues, through comparison. Yes, losing weight if you have health problems is an achievable and needed goal once you acknowledge how seriously this can change your life to the better.
Embrace the new process of maintaining a healthy lifestyle
Every beginning may be challenging, but the important thing is to start. If you are like me, that gets excited every time there is a new beginning, but hates when things are left half-done, then you need to follow the rule of enjoying the ride! What this means is that even though you may not see immediate results, you still feel comfortable in your own way. That’s what healthy living is all about.
A healthy lifestyle is a marathon, not a sprint
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle takes time and patience. Oh it does! Just like it may have taken us years to develop bad habits, the principle of patience still applies. What I do to make it easier is set my mindset in “let’s get ready, set, go” mode and embrace the journey. You don’t have to see it as endurance, because you might see it as a burden. It’s really not. There is nothing more rewarding than eating healthier, doing more exercise, sleeping better, developing more positive thoughts, etc. It’s all a combo, and you should enjoy the small changes you are making.
Plan and schedule
This is also one of the most important steps in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Effective planning is highly effective when it comes to achieving goals in life. It’s actually the core strategy to beating any failure. If you don’t plan, then you will struggle more to remain consistent. When I aim for improving a specific result with my fitness journey, I start by planning everything involved in my schedule. That includes, the foods I chose, the way I prepare my meals for the week, my workout schedule and so much more. Get yourself a planner, it will work wonders for you. I usually use the one on my phone or tablet, which is so much easier, but you can actually use a written planner that works for you. Make sure to include meal preps, your exercise routine and make time for relaxation as well.
Don’t get obsessed, be flexible
Here comes the saying that we need to choose consistency over perfection. How accurate this is! Really, our lives are busy and full of so much going on, that it is almost impossible to have things perfect. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is about making adjustments, understanding that there may be times when we would not be able to “break the rules”, and that, my friend, is also part of being healthy. This goes with having a social life, doing “cheat meals”, and spending the holidays. As long as you already set healthy habits for the most time, you should’t worry. Life is all about balance.
Always try and learn new things
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is also about experimenting new things. The reason is simple: Why is remaining consistent hard for some people? Most likely, because it may be boring at first. The idea is to get creative and find new ways to make your journey more interesting and fun. You don’t have to eat the same exact breakfast meal every morning, and you definitely don’t want to keep eating the same salad dishes. This is a typical example of why traditional diets rarely work. You start motivated, but the moment you try to “follow the plan”, you get bored and abandon the process. That’s not the idea when it comes to healthy eating.
Let’s try to make things more fun by trying different menus, when dining out, it’s easier to try other types of cuisines. Another example is when you do meal prepping. If you have kids, as a mom, you’ve gotta get creating. Another great fact is exercise. In order for your body to have better endurance, performance and results, you must change the workouts routine once in a while. Doing the exact same exercises over and over again can not only get you bored, but also stop the progress in your body’s metabolism or muscle growth. So in everything you do to achieve an active lifestyle, switch things up and be creative.
Track your progress
Another part of gaining consistency is keeping track of what you have achieved so far. It is important that you write things down, keep a record of dates, specific actions, results, daily habits, etc. Not only that, celebrate every small win! Remember that by doing baby steps, eventually will lead to a consistent healthy life. Plus, you will stay motivated.
Find daily motivation
Ok, so let’s say that you are already in the middle of your journey and sometimes you feel tired or lack motivation. What is the first thing that comes to your mind when are not motivated? Well, many strategies can come into place to help you out, but I will mention the keys to staying motivated.
First, remember why you are doing what you are doing. It may sound silly, but keeping in mind the goals behind maintaining a healthy lifestyle is more than crucial. That will fuel our brain to continue doing what we need to in order to get where we want to be. It applies for everything. As well, you need to find daily actions that keep you happy. Maybe, it is walking out your dog in the morning, or listening to your favorite music while working out. Having your mind busy and distracted from the routine can spice up your creativity and help you find new ideas to stay motivated.
Accountability also works when maintaining a healthy lifestyle as a long term goal. There are many simple strategies you can do here:
- Find a workout partner: This person may be your spouse or a fitness pal that may share your same interests. That will boost your motivation.
- Work on your planner: Go back to your planner and regularly monitor your progress.
- Join a group: It could be a workout group, a cooking class, or somewhere you can practice a healthy hobby. Hopefully, you’ll have the same goals in common, so you will find motivation and be accountable to each other.
- Get a meal prep planner or partner: Again, being organized with how you plan your meals will make things so much easier. If you share this task with your partner or even delegate, you can even find it more fun and not stressful. It will also help you keep within your budget!
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle! Let’s wrap it up…
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is a combination of simple strategies that, if you develop each day, will get into a lifetime habit. The key to achieving consistency involves: letting go of old bad habits, organizing yourself by setting real goals and expectations, embracing new changes, being patient, planning effectively, and being flexible. As well, you should add new things, track your progress, find what motivates you and rely on accountability. Have you tried any of these strategies in your health journey? Let me know in the comments. Share this guide with people who need to apply this.