When it comes to fitness and weight loss, small, daily, consistent changes can lead to big results. Here are five small actions you can take now that will create huge, long-lasting results for your health.
1. Consume Less Sugar
Did you know that Americans consume on average 156 pounds of sugar each year? That's the equivalent of 31 five-pound bags per person. Most of us aren't dumping it on our cereal every morning. All the obvious culprits, like sugary drinks, candy, and desserts add up. But there's lots of hidden sugar, too, often disguised in low-fat "healthy" foods. Of course, cutting out sweet drinks and juices, candy, and other sweets will eliminate a lot of sugar from your diet. But learn to read labels as well, and look for sugar under aliases such as corn syrup, glucose, and fructose - or any ingredient ending in -ose. Added calories from sugar in our diet can lead to obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and dental decay, so cutting back can have big benefits!
2. A Walk a Day
The benefits of a brisk daily walk are many and include weight loss, decreased depression and anxiety, improved heart health, and increased longevity. If you don't have time for a long daily walk, break it up into segments throughout the day. Your body and mind will thank you.
3. Two Minute Plank
Building a strong core will help with posture, spine alignment, balance, and strength. Would you like to really boost your core strength with a simple exercise that only takes two minutes a day? Go for the two-minute plank. This exercise requires no equipment and can be done almost anywhere. Don't worry if you're not there yet. Start slowly, and build up to two minutes.
4. Daily Salad
Remember when mom told you to eat your veggies? She was right! Green, leafy vegetables are loaded with nutrients such as fiber, vitamins C and K, carotenoids, antioxidants, and the minerals iron and calcium. Adding a daily salad to your diet using leafy greens such as arugula, spinach, leaf lettuce, kale, chard, and romaine is a fantastic and tasty way to boost your daily nutrition. Not to mention that leafy greens are filling without adding a lot of calories to your diet.
5. 10 Minutes to Prime
Daily priming is a routine practiced by results coach Tony Robbins. Get set for a great day with 10 minutes in the morning devoted to breathing, feeling gratitude, and seeing goals accomplished. Find a quiet place, choose a comfortable sitting position, and close your eyes. Spend a couple of minutes just focusing on breathing and reaching a state of calm. Then think of three things you can feel grateful for, and really feel deep in your heart your sense of gratitude. Think of the people in your life that you love and in your mind, see them being blessed with warmth and love throughout the day. Finally, think of a goal you are working toward or a task you want to accomplish, and in your mind, see it done. Feel the sense of accomplishment of achieving your goal. Take a deep breath in, let it out, and open your eyes, ready for the day.