by Kate McKay
My Dad. I remember him saying to me, “The body image you have for yourself is what you will present to the world. You have to be right from the inside first. Without that, you will have a tough time staying focused and committed to your goals.”
My Dad was a phenomenal role model. In fact, up until he passed away at 91, he was active with his yoga practice, walking all of Boston, and lifting weights at the Y.
So what I realized in that pivotal conversation was that if this guy, father of nine, and passionate advocate his entire life could fit in his fitness, then certainly I, mother of three, could do it too. Was it easy? Heck no. But I understood that I was the only one to right the ship. No one was going to be able to rescue me but me.
Trust me, I totally get how hard it is to balance out all of life’s demands on our time. So many of us are managing a career, aging parents, children, that trying to squeeze in fitness and fun seems to come last on our To-Do List, It’s totally understandable why we let our fitness and health slide, however, in order to live a healthy lifestyle for ourselves and our loved ones, we need to take the lead on putting ourselves back in the equation. It is not only the right thing to do, but a necessary thing to do to get back a sense of control in our lives and restore a sense of peace
Here are some quick tips you can apply starting today to feel fit and gain control of the chaos, starting in the most important place- within:
- Make exercise time non-negotiable. When it is time to go, hit the door and don’t turn back, no matter the dishes, unanswered emails, pouting teenager, appointments to schedule, It will all still be there when you get home. The good news is that with your workout behind you and with a clearer head, you will be able to see everything onl the “must do” list in a much rosier lens. You never hear anyone say that they regretted working out. Never. Neither will you.
- Eat clean starting with breakfast every day. Egg whites and oatmeal with blueberries are my daily staples seven days a week. It fuels me and helps me to be the most productive and positive self. Waiting to eat your first meal until lunchtime sets us up for serious self-sabotage and calorie glut later in the day. Eating smaller more frequent meals throughout your day makes you feel more energetic and alive. I know there are all kinds of new diets out there promoting calorie restricting, fasting and elimination; however, my biggest client successes are those who stick with a diet that is sustainable over the long term. So say adios to the 3 o’clock blues and self-sabotaging late night eating once and for all. Clean eats starting with a healthy breakfast is the ticket to getting your mood on track for the entire day.
- Watch your Language. Put the brakes on bad-mouthing your body and using self-defeating language. As a speaker and coach, I spend a lot of time talking about using positive, affirming communication. Your body is listening to all the negative things you are saying about it, as well as the people in your life who love and care for you. Just start noticing how you speak about yourself – what tapes you keep rewinding and playing in your head. Once you start paying attention you may be shocked at how much negative talk you are churning out. Replace these negative statements to more positive ones. Here are some examples: Today I am going to have a great day: I am healthy, whole and vital. I am a healthy and positive force in the world. I am grateful for the body I have and I am stronger every day. I can handle anything that comes my way. My body is beautiful and strong.
Today is a great day to begin to live into your full potential. Yes, challenges do happen. Sometimes, life will kick you down. But as the great motivational speaker Les Brown so aptly states, “When life knocks you down, be sure to fall on your back, because if you can see up, you can getup!” I couldn’t agree more. You deserve to have a wonderful life. Isn’t it time you claimed it?
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Kate McKay is a speaker, coach and best-selling author. To learn more about Kate, please visit her website at www.kate-mckay.com