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My Top 11 Strategies to Get (and Stay) Healthy in 2011

Here's my top 11 strategies for getting and staying healthy in 2011.  Most of these tips you may have seen before but they are an excellent reminder.  I've learned most of us need to be reminded of the basics to be successful at reaching our goals so here they are...

1) Write out your health goal for the next 28 days and read it out loud daily! Make it something that really gives you energy and determination to reach it!  Make sure you also write out and read the list of reasons on why you want to accomplish your goal. Don't under estimate the power of focus and emotion.

2) Review your Action Plan and all the secondary choices that you will make in order to reach your goal. Such as drink 10 glasses of water daily, do 30 minutes of exercise or healthy activity that will make you feel good like take a walk.

3) Restock your kitchen and get rid of all temptations. Designate a special cupboard for other family members if you must keep these tempting items around. Add good choices to your snack arsenal: celery, pickles, green beans, cucumber, bullion, sugar free jello, and sugar free pop cycles. Also cauliflower.

4) Explain to family members how important it is for you not to be tempted and that you are calling on them for help and support

5) Start journaling: write down everything…what you ate, how you feel. You will learn from your daily eating habits and be inspired when reading back at your successes!  

6) Plan your day: Lay out your meal plan, know your time schedule. Understand that you may need to eat more frequently during that week, so prepare accordingly. Know the “do’s and don’ts” of your plan and review your plan before you start your day.

7) Measure up: Use measuring cups, spoons, and kitchen scale to know that you are eating the right amount of food. You must educate your eye to proper portion size. 

8) Always start your day with a healthy meal first thing in the morning. The morning meal jump starts your metabolism. Research shows that people who eat breakfast burn 200-300 calories more per day! My own experience has been that those clients who choose to exercise or go to work without eating first, do not lose weight very fast!

9) Eat slowly! Take at least 20 minutes to eat. Use this time to write in your journal or read a bit of a positive or inspiring book.

10) Distract yourself when cravings strike. You hopefully will not be hungry between your meals, but if a craving does pop up…be prepared! Make a list of things to do that will take your mind off of your craving. For example take a walk, organize, go for a drive, etc. The activity only needs take about 15 minutes because a craving usually will go away by then. Also drink a big glass of water during this activity, and I think you will be pleasantly surprised when you rise victorious!

11) Take charge at restaurants. Know exactly how you will handle yourself there. Being prepared is the best defense. Say No to bread. Have a quick snack before you go and then order two appetizers (salad and shrimp cocktail) because appetizers are much closer to the amount of food we should be eating. If you order a full meal, ask for a take home box when the meal come and quickly place half of the dinner into the box for another day. 


michele shea-han

Dave, these are all really great tips. I have made a committment to getting fit and healthy this year. I've been holding onto about 25 extra pounds for far too long! I have done most of these ideas on your list here already. I really think having the support of your family and friends makes a huge difference and writing everything down that you eat or drink. I used to drink a glass of wine every night while making dinner. Now I wait till I sit down to have a glass of wine and eat carrots while I cook!

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