A healthy diet can be a roller coaster: all ups & downs, or a merry-go-round: spinning in circles. Get a healthy diet without the theme park attractions.
Until recently, a healthy diet has been a string of ups and downs consisting of a few florets of broccoli or baby carrots here and there, usually with a side of ranch and a “close enough” pat on my back. I am happy to say that I have achieved consistency, and I am off the roller coaster!
As it turns out, the toughest part of this process was getting started. That’s not to say the whole process hasn’t taken a lot of work and discipline, but knowing where and how to start was challenging. We have an almost infinite amount of resources at our fingertips, but those resources can often be overwhelming. Here are 6 quick suggestions that helped me get going.
The first three are the speed round, things that you can do right now to get started.
Skip the soda
Drink water with lunch and dinner meals.
Swap white for wheat
If you are having a sandwich today go for wheat bread. Some fast food places even have an option for a wheat bun.
Go for nuts
I always keep something to snack on at my desk for the afternoon or if I am working late. It used to be candy, now it is almonds.
The last three tips take a bit more time, but you can start them today. The three obstacles that kept me from a healthy diet were the cost, the time, and the habit (more like creating the habit).
I have always viewed eating healthy and taking supplements as a very expensive commitment but when I sat down and ran numbers, healthy is actually quite reasonable. For the price of two fast food combo meals, I picked up a starter kit with several supplements and shaker cup. The price of a couple of movie tickets, popcorn, and sodas got me a 30 day supply of protein.
The next challenge for me was time. Since my diet wasn’t a habit, or at least a good one, I needed to start with something quick. I decided on supplements as it only takes a few seconds to mix them into a drink or shake.
The last challenge was to start forming habits. I was able to do this two ways. I began by leaving the supplements out of the cupboards. I put them where I would see them on a regular basis. Every time I went into the kitchen I had a visual reminder of my goal. Additionally, I connected the desired habit to an existing one. I love to ride my bike and do so regularly. The night before I ride a put my gear together, fill my bottles, and get my bike food. This was the perfect time to mix up a protein shake or add some supplements to what I am drinking.
These are just a few quick points that helped me start on the path to better health. Of course I wouldn’t have stayed with any of this if I hadn’t noticed an improvement. Changing our dietary habits is a tall task and an ongoing process and these tips were a quick way to me get started and develop habits. I hope you find them useful too.