Every year I come up with a new years resolution that I follow through with for approximately three weeks. In the past they have been to give up chocolate or workout everyday. Well, neither of those are very attainable for me. In the end I would become frustrated and give up altogether. I went back to my unhealthy habits and felt like a failure.
Why do we do this? We feel the need to make drastic changes and expect unrealistic results. But change takes time. You can’t break a habit overnight and you probably can’t gain a healthy habit overnight either. I find it most helpful to slowly make changes and incorporate healthier habits into my life. I’ll grab an apple instead of a muffin, I drink water instead of soda, and I always take the stairs when I can.
This year, I decided to change my lifestyle instead of trying to follow some resolution I will never achieve. This lifestyle change includes the following goals:
Eat vegetables everyday
Exercise 4-5 days a week
Eat out less/ learn how to cook more recipes
The three week mark has passed and I am still going strong with my goals!
When I go grocery shopping I stock up on frozen and fresh veggies. I love the microwavable ones when I am in a time crunch. I pop them in the microwave for 5 minutes while I boil quinoa or brown rice. The meal literally costs under $2 and is pretty fast to prepare. Fresh veggies are great for roasting in the oven, my favorite is broccoli. But, carrots, sweet potatoes and asparagus also taste great. Lightly coat the veggies in olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Broccoli only takes about 15-20 T 400 degrees. Follow this link for a more detailed description here. Pictured below are roasted veggies, baked chicken, and brown rice.
I love Pinterest for finding new recipes. Last week I made chicken and veggies in the crock pot and it was so easy and simple. This Slow cooker chicken recipe can include whatever veggies you like, and take out the ones you don’t! I love when dinner is ready when I come back from class, after a long day spending a half hour cooking is usually the last thing you want to do.
The last way I have been sneaking veggies in everyday is in my smoothies. I decided to try some spinach in my smoothie, and I actually like it! By adding fruit and protein powder I can hardly taste the spinach.
Another thing I add to my smoothie is this Kefir lowfat milk smoothie. The cultures in it help aid in digestion. It is also available in blueberry. You can add any fruit to this smoothie; apples, pineapple, mango, blueberries, etc. I have also used milk or almond milk instead of the kefir. It is all about experimenting! Now, when its all blended up it definitely does not look pretty. But, it fills me up for a new hours and is loaded with goodness.
Now, to help me avoid grabbing a donut or bagel in the morning I have been making overnight oats. They are SO easy to make, no excuses! Again, Pinterest is a godsend for finding different recipes for my oats. The basics are 1/2 cup of quick oats and 1/2 cup of milk or almond milk. To add fiber you can also add chia seeds, or flax seed. Then, you can add a sweetener such as honey, brown sugar, or even maple syrup. I usually add honey and lots of fruit. Today I tried it with a dab of vanilla greek yogurt as well. Then, pop it in the fridge and eat it in the morning!
As you can see I usually use a mason jar so I can toss it in my lunch bag. I eat it cold and it is delicious! I love how filling it is, and it’s perfect for on the go. Again, experimenting is key. Sometimes I add a dash of cinnamon or vanilla. Almost any fruit would taste great in overnight oats.
As for exercising, variation is key. Doing the same thing everyday gets boring fast. I love cardio but I’ve been trying to incorporate weights in. I run on the treadmill, use the elliptical and have been biking lately. Yesterday I was feeling under the weather but I still went and walked for 30 minutes. It wasn’t as intense of a workout as I wanted, but it was better than nothing. Anything to get me moving helps me reach my goal. Luckily, my fiancé has been super supportive and we have been doing ab workouts together. He even has me doing push ups! I am a long way from where I want to be, but progress takes time and patience. Having a support group is so important. Tell them about your goals and your progress, it will help you stay on track.
Good luck with your new years goals!