4 Healthy Habits To Start Now Ready For January
Many people start their health journey in January, however, one of the best times to start your journey is in December! This gives you a chance to start forming healthy habits that will be so much more likely to stick moving into the New Year, rather than it being something that lasts just a few weeks. These things also aren’t anything that will disrupt your festivities, but will easily fit into your lifestyle! So, let’s find out how you can start to prioritise your health ready for the new year.
The first thing you can do to build a healthy habit is to eat more fruit and veg. Fruit and vegetables are packed full of incredible nutrients that help to fuel our bodies, from our digestive system to our brain and everything in between. So, eating more of them in your diet will help everything to function properly, as well as help you to feel great. Different coloured fruits and vegetables contain different nutrients, so when you next do your food shop, pick up a variety of different coloured fruit and veg so that you know you’re getting a well-balanced diet. You could start your day with a smoothie with mixed berries, a handful of spinach and a banana, maybe you snack on crunchy vegetables like carrots and celery with hummus, or maybe you have a bowl of fruit with a bit of cream for dessert. Fruits and vegetables don’t have to taste bad, so just be creative whilst keeping things as healthy as possible.
Next up, you should aim to move your body every day, ideally for at least 30 minutes. When people think about exercise they often think about doing really intense workouts, however, your body will thank you for any kind of movement, no matter where you are in your fitness journey. For some people, this might be a 30-minute walk or a gentle bike ride, perhaps a beginner’s yoga session using YouTube. For other people, workouts will be more intense, but the important thing is to listen to your body and how it feels. If you’re quite new to fitness, focus on doing things you enjoy, so perhaps you try a new fitness class that’s dance-focused if that’s what you enjoy. If you treat exercise as a chore and do things that aren’t enjoyable, you are unlikely to stick with it. So, maybe write out a little plan to help you get your movement in, for example, on busy days you could take a 30-minute walk at lunchtime, and then on quieter days you could take the time to try something new. Something else that always helps is getting a couple of gym sets that fit really well and are supportive, if you don’t have this then you’ll be unlikely to want to
Next up, a great healthy habit to have is to eat protein with every meal. Protein helps to support lots of different functions in the body, including repairing muscles, which will be important if you’re exercising more. Plus, protein helps you to feel fuller for longer, so when you’re eating more protein you’ll naturally snack less and be less focused on reaching for very sugary or fatty snacks. So, try to eat at least a handful-sized portion of protein with every meal, whether that’s chicken, beef, tofu, lentils, beans, lamb or anything else. Eating lean protein sources will also help with weight loss if that’s a goal of yours. Eating more plant-based protein sources will also help to cut costs, so perhaps if you love meat but want to make it cheaper, you could try reducing the meat in a portion and adding plant-based protein. For example, if you’re making a curry, replace some of the chicken with lentils, or in a chilli, replace some of the beef with beans. You can still enjoy the meat without the price tag!
One of the best things you can do for your health is get a good night’s sleep, so you should aim to get 8 hours if possible. Getting enough sleep helps to improve so many elements of your health, from your mood to brain performance and fatigue. We know for some people getting 8 hours isn’t realistic (e.g. people with children, insomnia or shift workers), however, you should try your best to fit the 8 hours in to help your body rest and recover properly. Whether this is going to bed earlier or being able to wake up slightly later, you should incorporate the extra time to fit into your routine to help you feel fantastic!