If, like many, you are starting this year off looking toward your health and improving it in the year to come, I encourage you to think about the concept of “minimum effective dose”.
“What’s the least I can do today, that will represent an improvement from what I’ve been doing?”If you’ve been sedentary, walking for 15-20 minutes each day this week is awesome! It WILL play into how you feel, for the better. Start tracking your steps and grow that # over time!If you’ve been drinking every other day, confine it to the weekends, and keep it respectable. Then find a good settling place from there. You may not miss it and how good you’ll feel without it may surprise you.If you haven’t been working out regularly in….forever, don’t fool yourself into thinking going every morning this week is going to be sustainable. 2 workouts this week is better than 0 last week, so shoot for 2. Then 3 a couple weeks down the line. Find a good settling place. And remember exercise should be done for enjoyment, for whole body health, for stress relief and mental benefit, but NOT as punishment. Ideally find an activity you enjoy and will look forward to, that as a nice side benefit, also happens to keep you moving.If you’ve been eating ALL the things and lots of them, don’t launch into the misery that is a super low calorie diet. Also don’t remove the food group that has represented 70% of your diet for the last month. Try to eat balanced, and think about *nourishing* your body with every food choice you make.If water intake is a foreign concept to you, shoot for 8 glasses of water per day. Half your bodyweight in ounces of water daily is a great rule of thumb for intake, but ‘more than I’ve been drinking’ is a perfectly valid goal.Going for broke right out of the gates likely won’t keep you at it long. Start slow, then build. Minimum effective dose. It’s not sexy, it really doesn’t sell, but the folks still “at it” 10 months from now are going to be the ones only ever adding the minimum effective dose, long after all the “all or nothing” people have fizzled out only to be right back where they started.Make this time different.