Common Mistakes People Make When Trying to Get Healthy

Are you trying to get healthy, start a new, healthier lifestyle, but finding yourself “falling off the wagon”?  Is it a struggle every day, just to think of what you need to do, and you give up some days because it’s just too much work?

Have you ever had a friend tell you that they were going on a healthy diet, or some type of new, exciting eating program, and she invites you to meet her at the gym any day after work? Then after a few months, you see her again, and……there’s no change? She didn’t lose weight, she doesn’t look any better, no radiant skin or hair, so you ask her  how her routine is going and she hesitates……then changes the subject?

Have you decided on a Sunday ( or every Sunday) that you are going to start eating better and exercising regularly starting on Monday, only to find that Monday night you are chowing down nachos and Margaritas with the girls after work?

Don’t be discouraged. Life is so busy that it’s easy to make mistakes and have setbacks. Don’t give up! With a little planning, along with a little knowledge, you can do this. Take a look at the top 5 common mistakes people make when trying to get healthy. Knowing these can help you get off on the right foot and start making your life the healthiest it can possibly be.

Get Healthy Green Road Sign

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1.  Failing to Plan

This really are the number one reason people fail in their attempts to get healthy. There’s an old saying that says; failing to plan is planning to fail. This is an absolute truth. The reason you didn’t make it Monday was because you didn’t plan for it on Sunday.

Make a shopping list. Think about every meal you are going to need for the next 6 days, including some snacks. Buy food containers, including bottles for liquids, and some type of lunch bag to carry them in. Spend part of Sunday ( or whatever day of the week works best for your schedule) cutting veggies, bagging individual servings ( for example, making 7 small zip lock baggies each containing 1 or 2 ounces of nuts from that huge, economy size jar you bought at the membership club) Cook ahead, if you can, and freeze extras.  Take a bag or box full of snacks to the office Monday morning.

By doing this, you will avoid the chance that, when hunger strikes, you head to the vending machine and choose anything just because you are hungry. If you are prepared with food and snacks, you remove the chance that you will fall off your diet because nothing is readily available.


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2.  Making it Strictly about Losing Weight

If you only plan is to lose weight, you will lose the battle in the end. Not the battle of the bulge, yes, you can and probably will lose weight if that is your goal. The problem is, when you make it only about losing weight, eventually you reach that goal, and then what? You will go back to those same old eating habits because the goal was completed. It’s kinda like running a marathon. After you hit the finish line, you’re done running, correct? Instead, make it about a lifestyle of being healthy, then you have a goal without end, something to maintain every single day.

If you are overweight, living a healthy lifestyle will enable you to lose weight, making it a very nice side effect, but not the main goal. Being skinny does not guarantee happiness, but  being healthy and fit, being able to enjoy your body, now that will make you happy.


3. Trying to be Perfect

Television, magazines, as well as the internet, have given us a false sense of perfection. They show us lives where people are thin, rich, young, well dressed, entertaining, amusing, with perfect jobs and expensive new cars. This is not reality, even though they push us to believe it is so.  So first off, forget perfection.  If you didn’t dust and vacuum your house today because you went to the gym, then so be it. If you waited an extra week or two to go to the salon for a cut and color because you were just too busy those weeks, so what? No one died, did they?

Also, don’t try to be a perfectionist when it comes to your new eating program. If you had about 6 oz. of lean protein and maybe you had a little more than 1 ounce of nuts one day, don’t sweat it. Don’t live by the food scale, life happens. You’ll live.


4.  Don’t Make Things so Complicated

Way back in the olden days (as grandma will tell you) people ate organic food all the time and walked everywhere. End of story. Now, people will tell you that you need all kinds of “special” whey powdered shakes from a particular manufacturer, smoothies with special protein powders, that you need specialized equipment for exercising, step counters, heart rate monitors, you name it.

People have forgotten that eating should be a pleasure. All natural, whole foods should be enjoyed, not dissected. Also, exercise, as much as possible, should be fun too. Run around outside with your kids, jump rope, dance in your living room, or go for a long, after dinner walk with your better half. Eat, smile, and enjoy life. It really is that simple.

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5. Not Having Support

If you really want to stick to your health routine this time around, tell people. It really does help keep you in line if you know your husband is going to give you the evil eye if you stare too long at those Oreos in the store. When the going gets rough (co-workers are having a bake sale!) it’s good to have someone to encourage you, cheer you on, and help you over those tough times. In the same way it helps to have your best friend waiting for you at the gym every morning at 7, it really does work when you have a great network of friends and family to cheer you on.