Keys to Success: 5 Elements for Healthy Habits

Last week, I discussed how to make healthy habit changes. This week I’m covering key elements needed to lessen the difficulty of incorporating new habits.

Think of it as a game plan to creating long lasting health habits rather than winging it.  

Consider these elements when implementing new healthy habits:

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1.     Focused, but flexible.

Before beginning any new habits, have a solid plan and a short back up plan. If you’ve decided to change your eating habits, have a few meals and snacks planned and those ingredients stocked. Meal prep once a week for meals you don’t have time to make. Also, have a plan for when you forget your lunch at home or you’re running errands all day. Perhaps you have a local restaurant or grocery store that you can pick up a quick healthy meal.

Schedule and plan your workouts ahead of time, so when you get to the gym or park you don’t waste any time. Also, have a backup in case you aren’t able to workout at your usual place. This is where being flexible and having a backup plan is needed.


2.     Create a successful environment.

Create an environment that is congruent with your goals. If you’re wanting to eat more fruits and vegetables, then stock your kitchen with fresh and frozen produce. If you want to increase your physical activity, make sure you have clean workout clothes.


3.     Trust the process.

Our bodies are sometimes slow to show changes. One week you can lose a few pounds and the next two weeks half a pound. Then the fourth week, you can lose a few pounds again. It’s frustrating, but a reality.

If you are putting in the work, changes are happening. The scale is not the only instrument to document change. Take photos, notice how your clothes feel, and use a measuring tape. These four measurements will give you a better overall picture of what is happening.


4.     Each day (or meal) is a do-over.

Take this process one day, or one meal at a time. If you overeat at lunch, get back on track for your next meal. If you skipped your workout, get back on track the next day.


5.     Above all, be consistent.

Consistency is huge. What you do day in and day out ultimately determines whether you succeed or not. One overindulgence or skipped workout will not derail you. Overtime you will be successful.

How to Create Healthy Habits for Weight Loss and Wellness

Creating new habits is not an easy process, but it is doable.

Whether your goal is weight loss or improving wellness, creating healthy habits is a strategy that can help you reach your goals. The key to creating lasting habits is to start small, choose one that will jump start whatever goal you’re working on, and stay consistent.

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For weight loss, record your food/drink intake for 7 days and include the amount of food eaten and when.

Next, look over your food log and take note of your food preferences and meal pattern. It’s important to consider your lifestyle, likes, and dislikes. You don’t want to change your lifestyle too much or too drastically.

Make a list of habits, and pick one that is easy and will have an impact on reducing calories.

Stick with that habit for 2 weeks. After 2 weeks, ask yourself if the habit change had any positive affect on your life. If so, continue the habit and add another one.

Continue in this manner until you reach your goals. Once you have reached your goals, you will want to continue with your healthy habits. At the bottom of this post, I’ve included a habit tracker you can print or upload to the Goodnotes app to keep track of your habits.

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I’ve listed some habits for you to consider if you’re wanting to improve your health and lose weight:

  • -Lift weights

  • -Drink more water

  • -Walk and move more

  • -Eat more produce

  • -Get 7-9 hours of sleep daily

  • -Keep a food and exercise log

  • -Cook or prepare most of your meals at home

  • -Eat protein at most meals

  • -Swap regular soda for diet soda

  • -Cut out liquid calories

  • -Monitor progress

  • -Snack less often

  • -Start meditating

  • -Practice yoga

  • -Keep a gratitude journal

Keeping track of your habits is a great way to stay consistent and accountable. Click on the link to download your habit tracker.

What healthy habits are you working on?

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