5 Healthy Changes to Make Now

by Jillian Michaels
Tue, 10/20/2015 - 19:59
The Jillian Michaels Blog

Change doesn't happen overnight and it takes a lot of dedication and hard work. If you're ready to start living a healthier, happier life, Jillian Michaels has all of the tips to help you make it happen - starting today!

If you really want to make a change, then let's do it — together! I won't lie to you, it's not going to be easy. Committing to a healthier lifestyle is just that — a commitment, and it's a big one that will take a lot of work. But believe me when I tell you it'll be worth it! I bet you've already tried it your way, so let's give my way a try.

Here are five steps to change your diet, exercise and lifestyle for the better — for good!

Change Your Mind

The first step is no sweat — literally. It's all in your head. Realize that you have the power to change your life by changing your mind-set. We all have the ability to choose our paths, reach our goals, and build exceptional lives. The challenge is in BELIEVING you can.

Get real: Look closely at how your emotions and behaviors are affecting your health. Are you feeding something besides your hunger, like your feelings? Examine your self-destructive behaviors and work on minimizing the negative self-talk. Oftentimes, journaling, positive affirmations, visualization, and other techniques can help improve your self-esteem and move you closer to your goals.

Set Attainable Goals

What is your vision of the ultimate you? Take some time to imagine it, break it down, and then WRITE it down! To make permanent change, you'll need to set short-term and long-term goals, then create and write down your action plans to achieve them.

Whether you are establishing a new daily exercise regimen or weekly weigh-in, mastering a new exercise move each week, or learning new healthy recipes to cook for you and your family — setting specific, realistic goals will help you see the progress you're making and keep you motivated.

Reward yourself in life-affirming ways — that means no food rewards! Treat yourself to a massage for killing it at the gym all week or splurge on a new workout outfit or pair of sneakers. Reaffirm your belief in yourself and your goals daily, and you'll find yourself taking the active steps needed to achieve them.

Set Up a Support System

You are responsible for your own success, but we all get by with a little help from our friends and family, right? That's why it's important to build a healthy support system. Share your goals and how you're planning to accomplish them. Give them the lowdown on the types of foods you're eating — and no longer eating — and your new workout schedule. Let them know how important it is to you to have their support.

Enlist your coworkers too. They can keep you on track on the job by cutting back on leaving the unhealthy treats around. Chances are you'll find someone else looking for support too. Hello, new exercise buddy! Lean on your network when you feel discouraged or unmotivated, and celebrate with them when you hit a milestone.

Make Healthier Choices

Restock your fridge and pantry. Since you can't eat what's not there, dump all the junk foods in your cupboards immediately. Make room for nutritious, energy-boosting fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. Plan out a few go-to healthy meals too, then stock up on those ingredients, along with snack-size packages of nuts, baby carrots, and organic yogurt for when you are on the run.

Start Moving!

Exercise is the BEST way to burn calories and fat. Find out the activities that will allow you to burn the most calories. I'm a huge fan of circuit training because it simultaneously improves mobility, strength, and stamina. If you've been sedentary, just take that first step. You may not be ready to run a half-marathon, but you can go for a walk or maybe even a short run.

Stick with it.

Set up a workout schedule and mark it on your calendar along with your most important appointments of the day — then DO it! It may not be a piece of cake (better not be!), but with the right mind-set, motivation, and support system, you CAN do this. Believe in yourself and your ability to change and you will.