Resolutions are overrated. Building habits and setting smart goals are what its really all about.
Sorry if I’m killing your #newyearnewme vibes. The truth is that resolutions made this time of year are generally not accomplished by 80% of us lowly humans.
The problem with habits is that they take time and effort, and that is something us humans don’t naturally drift to. Setting a fiery resolution as of Jan 1, 2018 does not come close to guarantee that you wont’ be saying the same thing next year at this time. Health is an ongoing series of habits and decisions you make EVERY SINGLE DAY. And every day is a new adventure, so the decisions will change DAILY. The best solution is forming a solid line up of habits to help you along the decision making trail.
One of the biggest barriers clients tell me about is not having enough time to include new healthy habits into their life, or being too busy to commit to a coaching schedule, complete daily tasks to support their long term health, or to take time for themselves. A lot of this involves choosing to remove the inconvenience of health from our lives (and ironically thereby making health more convenient– making it the obvious choice).
We’ll talk more about sustainable habit practices soon. In this post I am going to outline 5 SIMPLE things you can add to your day to day routine that don’t require more then 5min.
1. Get Down (on the ground)
The simple act of spending time on the ground, and getting back up again is an amazingly simple way to get the whole body moving. Most of us spend the majority of our days in a seated position. It’s well known by now that our conventional chair based positions are absolute crap for our bodies. Evolutionarily we were designed to spend majority of our time in transit (walking, crouching, etc), or in ground based positions (deep squats, kneeling positions, cross legged or other variations of sitting on the ground.).
We have seen a slow creep of convenient ways to bring different positions back into our lives- from ball chairs to standing desks, however, the majority of us still plunk down and stay for way too long.
So here’s the deal. Take a minute, get off your duff, and get on the ground. Sit however is comfortable, kneel, or even lay down and do some rolling around. Then… get up!
Do that 20-50times a day for the best results. Start with what you can handle, and build from there.
If you have joint pain or other health conditions preventing you from doing this simple movement, you need to get yourself to a practitioner who knows what’s up and deal with that. Or, comment/email us with questions and we can send you some personalized advice.
Consults are always free at IM, and having someone chat with you about where you’re at and how to get you where you want to go is never a poor investment.
One of the best tests of longevity is this simple (and yes, it should be SIMPLE), act of moving your body weight from the ground level to a up right position unassisted. No matter what your age or ability, I am confident you can get there with the right tools- and that you’ll feel much healthier for this addition to your day.
Okay, seriously, let’s talk about this.
Majority of people are not drinking nearly enough water. Especially those of us who live in the sub zero temperatures on this planet.
I can tell the minute I look at someone, and work on their tissues, what their hydration is like.
Why is hydrating so important? Well why is gas and oil necessary for your car?
Water does many things for our body. Our brain function relies on proper hydration and will use majority of what we get into ourselves immediately just for baseline functioning. All our tissues all the way down to a cell level require water to be healthy. If our cells aren’t healthy, our tissues don’t function at their full levels, and we pay the toll. Joint stiffness, muscle soreness, fatigue, headaches, bloating, water retention, arthritis, sleep issues, low mood quality, you name it I can probably relate it back to your poor hydration habits.
For those of you with existing health conditions or looking to lose weight. This should be of extra importance for you!
How much do you need to drink? You should have a water bottle with you throughout your day, and be taking sips routinely. Generally, I would say 2-3L/day for a healthy adult is adequate. Bet thats a lot more then you’re currently drinking!
For those of you raising protest about more frequent trips to the bathroom, your kidneys thank you in advance. This won’t be a long term inconvenience, but like anything allow for an adjustment period. Try adding herb or fruit (lemon is popular!) infusions! Tea counts as intake as well, but coffee and other sugary drinks not so much.
Want to make this easy? Get yourself a water bottle you’ll love to carry around with you, and keep it full! Just the simple act of having it near you through your day will remind you to take sips from it.
3. The 80% Rule
Coming off of the holiday season and rolling into our new diet plans is always easy when we start… but forming the right habits now will make that February crash and burn easier to prevent.
When it comes to nutrition, there are a lot of things I could throw at you in terms of the latest trends in dieting and why they are probably bulls*** and why you should stick to whole foods and a variable diet full of the things we all know that are good for us… but instead I’m going to leave you with the simplest guideline.
Eat SLOWLY and MINDFULLY, and stop putting things in your mouth when you feel 80% full.
Get the DISTRACTIONS (aka, your phone) away from your eating area, and enjoy what you’re eating. Finding 80% full for most of us is pretty difficult at first, but having minimal distractions and eating slower will help the process. 80% full to me feels.. satisfied. Not hungry, not stuffed. Not empty, but not bloated or brimming. Pay attention to what your literal gut is telling you, and then LISTEN TO IT.
Doing this now while you’re high on resolution plans will make the habit before you hit the Valentine’s day chocolate sales . Trust me.
4. Learn How to Breathe
We’ve talked about breathing before. The mechanics of it are something a lot of us get wrong a lot of the time, and switching back to diaphragm breathing or alligator style breathing not only benefits the rest of our movement, but also our nervous system and therefore our entire being.
No matter where you’re at, a high performance athlete, runner, weekend warrior with aches and pains, office worker, retiree, everyday human with average health, working on getting yourself to a healthier place, or still stuck where you are, changing your breathing can literally change your life. From mood improvement, sleep enhancement, pain reliever, stress reliever, and focus enhancer- this could be your first step towards something better.
Was that cheesy? #sorrynotsorry
As an added bonus it ties into our next step…
5. Take Five
I don’t care who you are you have time to take 5minutes for yourself.
This isn’t about making sure you hit the gym everyday, or only eat the perfect meals, or even about adding a dedicated meditation practice to your day.
I want you to take 5 minutes to do whatever the heck you want to do.
Some suggestions I could make would be:
- spending 5 minutes practicing your breathing
- going for a stroll outside your office (even better, in the actual outdoors)
- taking 5minutes to get up and down off the floor, or do any other combination of movements that you want to do– check our instagram for ideas here!!!
- 5min letting your mind clear while sipping your favourite drink (OR THAT WATER YOU SHOULD BE DRINKING ANYWAY)
- Writing out your intentions for the day, week, month and the goals that will help those intentions come to fruition.
- 5 technology free moments to meditate on all the things your grateful for today (write these down for added benefit!)
You get the point. The minutes are yours, use them wisely and in a forward thinking way with your health goals in mind.
Those are all simple things right? How many of you will actually add them in? I’m curious!
As I mentioned above, consults with IM coaches and therapists are always free. Our drive is to help you with your drive towards health. Whatever level you are at. Click here to book your consult with us. We’ll even include some goal setting tricks to get you started!
Let’s make 2018 all it can be!