Be flexible In Forward Motion

So often my clients make excuses about their health based on something that happened and recently changed their “regular” routine.

“Oh, I broke my leg and haven’t worked out in 2 months” or “I just changed jobs and can’t fit ‘it’ in anymore.” Harder yet, I hear about caring for aging parents and sick children…these changes too soon become the new “routine” for people and will certainly add mental and physical stress! Stress adds to weight gain through sleep interruption in-turn leading to poor nutritional choices and self care if you are not aware of your own wellness when there is significant change. Wellness is 360 degrees of your life, take a few moments and regain perspective; remember, life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it!

Anytime you have a condition or a situation that interrupts, or lays the foundation for interruption, lasting more than 2 weeks- you need to adjust yourself to stay on the positive side of your own wellness. After all, if you are breaking down while caring for an ill family member, then that presents a whole other set of problems to compensate for…

It is more important then ever, in the face of challenge or change to your “regular” routine (fitness, nutrition and balance), to find a way to recommit to yourself for your continued health and wellness maintenance. If there is a “change” to your life that lasts longer then 10 days-2 weeks and  takes you far from the opportunity to get to the gym or “shop & cook” the best foods, well, then it is actually your new wellness journey! Pivot and turn in the new direction remaining in forward motion! Keep your eye on the ultimate goal…maintaining your personal wellness for the best health you can achieve given the current circumstance.

Wellness is paramount in the face of uncertainty. You choose your journey to stay as well as you can…for your children, for your aging parents, for your spouse, for continued success in your career, etc.  Unless you are laid up in the hospital with an unforeseen challenge, you can seize the opportunity to be flexible. Remember, if you are not able to maintain your “gym” routine, put effort into staying active with 10 minute bursts of aerobic activities 3 times each day (Boom 10). Walk, do jumping jacks, practice deep breathing with long sustained stretching (there you go, 3-ten minute activities!) which can, at the very least, help maintain aerobic fitness and bust some stress, during times of significant change.

Finding yourself on the road more than usual make sure to grab fruit and hearty grain bars for the car because these are better nutritional choices then fast food or those awful gas station energy drinks! Continue to drink lots of water, staying hydrated adds a better sense of well being; it helps your skin by flushing out toxins released by stress hormones during changes that are tough. Plus recall some positive moments from your life that can bring you better perspective on your current challenge with a five-minute self reflection everyday.

Too often I hear about “falling off the wagon”; however, choosing wellness at all times is less of a wagon ride to fall off of! Plainly speaking, your feet are on the current road and when the road changes direction you shouldn’t be walking backwards- you have to stay in forward motion as you move into the next set of life’s journey. Making better choices often actually helps you stay as balanced as possible during the peak times of life change which are actually your current life-reality.

Water: Every living being on earth needs it!

Water improves your overall health by cleansing your body from waste and toxins all the time. Enough water in your system daily
will improve
the absorption of vitamins and nutrients from food which in turn aids digestion and increases your energy levels. Cleansing your internal organs with water helps prevent certain cancers caused by poor diet and inactivity; it also thins blood naturally which improves your circulation and lowers health risks associated
with high blood pressure and coronary heart disease. Water is your best friend for weight maintenance or loss.

 

Drinking enough water daily will speed up your metabolism
to burn more calories during and after any workout. Your body needs to
metabolize stored fat into energy which slows considerably when you are even
mildly dehydrated; therefore, you are working against yourself by not giving
your body good amounts of water to use. (Don’t do that!) Water lubricates muscle fibers and adds  “definition” when you’re talking about muscle tone! Oh yeah!

Water improves your skin, the largest organ! Water helps to
prevent sagging skin caused by aging and weight loss. Water plumps the skin
cells, giving you a younger and healthier look. Also, during times
of weight loss, your body will be trying to get rid of a lot of waste because of
stored fat, so giving your body enough water simply helps flush all of that out.
(No pun intended, but honestly, not a bad graphic.)

General rules to follow:  Drink at least 8 “glasses” per day– based on an 8 oz glass, for a total ½ gallon of water each day. Start there and build your water consumption, for example: I work out with moderate intensity at least 30 minutes each day and drink about 1 gallon everyday. (I know, crazy right, but honestly, I feel blah if I don’t have enough water, & I crave more sweets probably because I am looking for energy.)  Your amount may change depending on your medical condition and medication, so ask your doctor for specifics as needed especially if you have kidney or liver issues.

Overweight? Drink 1 glass extra per day for every 20 pounds over “normal weight” because the extra weight creates extra metabolic demand. And when you are working out, you should add 1 glass for every 20 minutes of the workout routine.

Do not count sodas and coffee as part of your daily liquid consumption. Sugary drinks and caffeine, even diet drinks without sugar, are dehydrators and
are not quality liquids! The 8 or more glasses of water daily should come in
addition to other beverages you’re already drinking. You will likely not crave much of anything else once you begin drinking water!

Eating a diet rich in vegetables and fruit means you are already consuming water through your diet…that’s good, so pat yourself on the back! Check out this great link for more information: Water Content of Fruits and Vegetables provided by the University of Kentucky research.

Water has many advantages over the other goods you consume daily
when you are examining your current lifestyle eating habits. Don’t
underestimate its benefits! Consuming enough water will prevent you from getting
dehydrated which will help your body by not storing unwanted fat. Awesome, right? You may also lower your blood pressure immediately once you become properly hydrated…it’s so good for you!

When you become dehydrated, your body goes into a survival mode
and begins to store any water it gets in all kinds of places that actually look
like unsightly bulges, sort of like a camel’s hump. Yikes. So, consistently drinking enough water, your body will get the idea that it doesn’t need to store it, that’s
good
. At first you might find yourself heading to the restroom more often;
however, as your body begins “using” the new natural hydration level, those
trips will slow down.

One more advantage, if you or someone you love (spouse, kids or
aging parents) is suffering from headaches, random stomach aches, dry skin,
dizziness, or constipation simply try adding more water everyday because these
are signs of dehydration, which can be chronic and disruptive. (Link at bottom of page for more information.) Think about this- for nearly any hospital stay you’re hooked up to a saline-drip IV, the medical community must know something they’re not communicating effectively. Hydration eliminates many issues & speeds recovery of the rest!

How to get enough-Quick Tips: (so easy)

1. First thing each day fill a mug full of water and drink it. Viola, 8-10oz and you have barely opened your eyes! If you notice this new habit makes you feel better than your first cup o’java let me know, I know it helps me!

2. At the store, pick up a small pack of water bottles to keep in the car (this works most of the year, I wouldn’t recommend this habit in the summer though, the inside car temperature gets too hot for this to be refreshing).

3. Keep a cup specifically for water at your desk or work
station.  Make a pact with you that looking at it means it’s time to fill up!

4. At home: Through the door water on your refrigerator? Use it! Set some cups each facet in the house at all times, I bet your water consumption doubles!! We keep a sharpie and disposable “cups” near the water dispenser in the kitchen; this cuts down on the stack of cups piling up in the sink and makes for easy tracking of consumption. It’s a family game – write Name, Day of the Week and Tally Mark for each fill up!

Put this great habit into your lifestyle and be sure to check the mirror for progress. Notice the difference in your skin as wrinkles will begin disappearing; your hands will be less itchy and your tummy won’t be as round! So simple, so true. (also check out Healthy Nutrition)

Dehydration Symptoms can range from mild to severe, the Mayo Clinic offers an in
depth look at these symptoms and may be very helpful for those suffering on a
daily basis.