She girds herself with strength,
And strengthens her arms.
Did the above verse already send you running? I pray it hasn’t! Step one to starting a healthier life is to pray. With Christ we can do anything (Philippians 4:13) and when we start on our knees He helps us keep things going and keep them in perspective.
So step one is pray!!!
Step two set realistic flexible and when possible non-number specific goals. Sometimes it helps me to have two goals, a short term and a long term goal. Other times or in addition to those first two I will have a minimum goal as well as a “would be really nice” goal. My current goal is to lose 5 lbs before my next trip to El Salvador but my “would be really nice” goal is 10. 10 means no cheating at all between now and then but since 5 is my minimum if I hit only that I am happy. As a matter of fact my real goal is to fit into my clothes for the trip comfortably. So even if the numbers don’t match then I will be satisfied if the clothes fit good. So be realistic flexible and don’t rely too much on numbers.
Step three is find a system that works for you. I live on a budget and have food allergies so many programs that others use don’t work for me. I also have an oddball work schedule so gyms aren’t my best option. I had to figure out systems that do work for me.
Step four when you blow it don’t blow the whole day or diet, just start fresh right after. If you didn’t get your exercise in that morning try that evening even if its shorter. Never go more than 24 hours without resetting and starting fresh.
Step five focus on feeling good. When you have more energy and you are comfortable in your clothes you don’t focus on the numbers as much and you also get motivated to keep doing it!
Step six get addicted. The more you exercise the more addicting it is. If you have to stop for a time try very hard to get right back into it or figure out a way to exercise differently in between (I.e. a leg injury may stop you from running but can you swim?).
Step seven stop reading this and get out there and do it!