It’s been 4 weeks! You knew it was coming, another transformation photo! Even if you don’t think there’s a difference, I still encourage you to snap the pic. Sometimes it’s hard for us to see a change but over time it’s apparent. Pregnancy is the perfect example. I never wanted to take the growing belly selfies, but with a gentle push from friends I did and I’m so thankful! Looking back at those weekly shots in the post The Most Selfies I’ve Ever Taken, I now see the progressive changes that I wasn’t recognizing on my own.
If the reason you don’t want to take another photo is that you haven’t been putting forth much effort, then great, let this be a fire under you hiney to get back to it!
This week we’re going to talk about posture.
When your ankles, hips, shoulders, and head are lined up comfortably one above the other, your posture is correct. Your knees should not be locked, but slightly bent and your feet should be shoulder width apart.
I found this clever image that helps identify where you might be falling, or standing rather.
Why is posture so important? If you ask any chiropractor or physical therapist, they’d say “good posture means good health”. It allows your joints to work properly without unnecessary pressure where it doesn’t belong. It maintains muscular strength in the areas that decrease pressure on nerves. The list goes on including simply looking better… healthy and alive!
I’ve been amazed at the difference I’ve felt when focusing on my stance. I did it this past week and I’m actually sore from it! A good ache of course, soreness from contracting muscles to keep my spine straight, especially between my shoulder blades. After being pregnant and now a new mom, I found myself slouching as if I was still carrying pounds of baby in front of me.
It’s harder than it sounds to keep conscious of your posture. Most of you have probably corrected your posture while reading this and a good majority of you will forget about it before the end of this post.
This week I challenge you to be fully aware of your body, head to toe. When you’re cooking, working at a desk, holding your baby, standing in line at the store and even sleeping!
So how we’d do with last weeks challenge? No processed sugar was to be consumed and hopefully forgotten about… ha… ha… ha. I give myself a B+ considering effort, environment and temptations declined. The Sunday after I posted the challenge, we went to a “Candyland” birthday party. What’s funny, is nothing there was my favorite kind of sugar. It wasn’t like there was a Rice Krispie treat cake or chocolate covered nuts, however I still found myself being tempted by the flavors that were offered. I admit I nibbled here and there and regretted every bite that wasn’t worth it, which was all of them! Lesson learned.
This week is all about the food prep. No matter what diet you’re on or nutritional plan you follow, being prepared is always helpful. The number one thing I hear when this topic is brought up is time. It’s time consuming to get out the tubberware, chopping block and utensils to dice up your fruit and veggies. And who has spare minutes to cook up your protein and separate it all for the week? You do.
When you want something bad enough, you make it happen!
I personally enjoy it, I guess you could call it my kitchen therapy. I pour a glass of wine, pull my hair back and turn on my favorite music (or if I really want to nerd out, I’ll turn on a health documentary or cooking show). Then I lay out all of my ingredients and all of the storage containers and prep away! I intended on doing this and snapping all the pics from my own kitchen, but then I woke up and it was today, Friday. For the sake of all you that love visuals, me included, here are some beautiful examples I found.
If you’re not up for organizing full meals, start with just preparing a few containers of cleaned cut fruit and veggies. Something you can reach for in a hurry or in a “must snack now!” moment. If you open my fridge you’ll usually find celery sticks, sliced cucumber, other veggies and cleaned fruit ready to be eaten. I don’t know how many times I’ve gone into the fridge with major mind hungry (meaning in my head and not in my gut) ready to devour the first thing I saw. Due to convenience, I’d just grab a veggie bag with maybe some hummus, mashed avocado or bean dip.
What if you don’t eat all of your prepped veggies before they start to turn bad? Throw them in a skillet and you’ve got dinner with rice, roll them up in butterleaf and now you have lettuce wraps, toss them in a little oil and roast them at 400 until they’re crispy.. oh so good! My recent favorite trick is to throw them in a blender after being cooked (in anyway) with some seasoning and nut milk. Heat and eat like soup or dip with crackers. Yum!
This weeks homework:
1. Every moment you consciously think of your posture, fix it! Did you already forget?
2. Make time for one session of treating yourself to stocking the fridge with prepared fresh food. You’re worth it!
3. Take the next transition photo. Deep breath, you can do it!
4. Remember that fun little workout we recorded on week one? Do it again and see if there’s any improvement in your numbers.
Set a timer for 1 minute and count how many pushups you can do. Then again for squats and burpees. Even if you do 4 and the rest for 30 seconds and do 4 more, just keep attempting for the entire 2 minutes. Write it down and store away with that glorious photo you just took.
Wrapping up our lifestyle changes so far:
1. Use the stairs every chance you get!
2. Stick to the single serving amount or less.
3. Play with pop-cycle sticks and actually use them!
4. Consume products that are closest to their original state!
5. Avoid artificial sweeteners found in most sugar free products.
6. Walk as much as you can at every opportunity!
9. Food Prep! Make it easier to make better choices.
10. Keep you posture in mind. Good posture, good health!