In order to live a truly healthy life, it is important to adjust each facet of your behavior and routine. For some women, this may mean an increased time spent on self-care each day; for others, it may look like a new exercise routine. Once you’ve taken a close look at your own life, you’ll know how to build a healthy lifestyle from head to toe that will make you feel better, mentally and physically, for years to come. Here are some ways you can get started.
Change up your self-care routine
Exercise, diet, self-care and reduced stress are all necessary to be healthy, and to maintain that state of health throughout your life. If you have previously neglected these kinds of habits, it is best to start small, that way you can experience small victories each day while progressing to a greater state of health. The simplest way to do this is to start off with a basic self-care routine:
First, make sure you get enough sleep each night. Even though different people have different natural rhythms that determine how much sleep they need to feel awake and alert throughout the day, as well as when they need it, the common denominator is that some sleep is required. It is also a myth that people can ‘catch up on sleep’ after several days of operating on minimal sleep. Actually, too much sleep can be just as ineffective as too little sleep. In general, you should aim for around seven to nine hours of sleep each night. It is not enough to simply get sleep; the quality of the sleep greatly affects its efficacy the next day. To ensure a comfortable, undisturbed sleep, keep your bedroom cool, dark and dry and turn off any electronic devices an hour or two before bed to allow your mind time to rest.
Another part of self-care that can give your health a starting boost is making sure you have enough time each week to rest and take part in social activities. While this may mean you have to say no to certain obligations to get time to yourself, it is necessary to prevent yourself from becoming overworked and lethargic. Ultimately, sleep and relaxation form the foundations of a basic self-care routine that will help you feel more level-headed and energized throughout the day, allowing you to make better decisions and rest more effectively at the end of the day.
Have an outlet for stress
Even if you have to manage the worries of your job on top of your familial duties, it is important to have a healthy outlet for stress, instead of resorting to drugs or alcohol. Women are at a higher risk than men for health problems related to drinking - in particular, research shows that women who consume more than one drink per day are at higher risk for breast cancer overall. Exercise can be a great way to manage your stress, but so can spending time with friends or family or meditating in a quiet space.
Maintain a healthy diet and exercise regimen
Many women with full time jobs go without a healthy meal each day in hopes of saving time. However, this can rapidly diminish their energy levels and overall happiness. Processed food is often less nourishing than home-cooked meals, and with incredibly high levels of added sugars and salt, can be unhealthy. Even if you also have to make food for your family, be sure to include dark, leafy greens and other fresh vegetables in your meals. You can also try cutting out oils and reducing the amount of salt you use in your more relaxed, convenient meals. Support your diet with an aerobics-focused exercise routine to support your cardiovascular health.
Sometimes it may feel like you have no time to take care of yourself. However, in order to be the best person you can be, you should find an extra hour each day to make sure you are in the best state of health possible.
Photo Credit: pexels.com
Sheila Olson of fitsheila.com | firstname.lastname@example.org
Self-care is an important part of your life. It is taking care of yourself, after all. In our crazy, hectic world, self-care often falls off of our priorities lists because everything (and everyone) else needs to be cared for first. You’re the only person who can take care of your own body, so you have to make the decision to do so.
Here are some ways to incorporate more self-care and fitness into your life.
Behind The Scenes at a Mighty Petunia Photo Shoot
Tank tops, sports bras, yoga pants, makeup, hairspray, and a whole lot of attitude…
That’s what you’ll find behind the scenes at a Mighty Petunia photo shoot. These ladies are feminine and fierce and they aren’t afraid to show both of those sides… in their everyday lives and at our photo shoot!
We have a whole rack of bright and colorful tank tops and a beautiful women who want to show you how Mighty Petunia helps keep them motivated.
You may be thinking that packing a group of women into a small photography studio could result in total chaos, but that was definitely not the case here. Instead you’ll find our Mighty Petunias chatting, laughing, smiling, and always ready to strike a pose!
Inevitably, our conversation turns to fitness, working out, and motivation. We all know how hard it can be to get motivated to work out when you have a million other things going on in life. All of our models agree that it can be a real struggle. And that’s where Mighty Petunia tanks can help. They all love their MP tanks for different reasons, but each one of their reasons comes down to finding the motivation within themselves to accomplish their fitness goals.
Feeling a little blah? Unmotivated? Tired? Uninspired? Throw on your favorite MP tank and take a look in the mirror. Remind yourself of what you’re working for. Choosing to work out isn’t always easy, but it’s always worth it in the end. Finding motivation can be difficult too, and sometimes you just need to let a cute tank with an inspiring message do the work for you! Trust us, we’ve been there… and we completely understand that putting on a tank top that makes you feel good AND motivates your mind can totally do the trick.
We shouldn't have been surprised. It's been reported that the average American woman wears a size 12-14. So it stands to reason that there are women who work out that are smaller than that AND larger than that. As soon as Mighty Petunia launched, we received requests for larger sizes. And while we wanted to accommodate those requests, it was difficult finding larger sizes that satisfied our requirements...soft, comfy, and could keep up with a workout. After a bit of checking around, we found the tanks you can find in the Curvalicious section of www.mightypetunia.com. Models Chelsea, Antonette and Amy rock our tanks and put them to the test. Now, everyone no matter their size, can find that little extra motivation we can all use. Hope this makes you as happy as it makes us!
I got an unexpected, exciting, contact last week from an assistant to Lilliana Vazquez. She reached out to request some Mighty Petunia tank tops for a segment Lilliana was doing on the Today Show. (Lilliana is a "Style Expert, TV Host and Taste Maker". Read more about her here http://thelvguide.com/). She asked if I could get the tanks to 30 Rock by Friday. Hmmmm. Let me think for a sec. Hell yeah! I was on it.
And while all this was exciting, and appreciated, I was shocked at how MOTIVATING it was. I got the request on Monday 12/29 and after several months of "half-assing" it in regards to Mighty Petunia, I accomplished the following: I surveyed people on Facebook to find out how they thought the website could improve and made some of the suggested changes (which were fantastic). I changed the theme on the website so it would be responsive on mobile. For those of you who aren't super techie (like me) that means so that it looks like the desktop site when you go to the site on your phone. I added a SALE section to the site. I wrote 2 blogs. I chose 8 new phrases for new tanks to be added for the first half of 2016. I selected a new style of tank for the Curvalicious category for more selection for curvy women that I'll add over the first half of the year AND I scheduled a photo shoot to get all the new product photographed on our models.
So the question for me is "how can one phone call have such a big impact on my level of motivation?". Everyone needs a little boost now and then for sure, but how do we bottle this feeling and pull it out of the cupboard when we need it? I think it begins with self-talk. Not just practicing talking to yourself in a positive way but actually LISTENING to the message. We blow ourselves off all the time when we try to encourage ourselves. We diminish the message and discount what's being said because we're saying it!
So, in addition to catching me watching the Today Show segment every now and then, you'll also catch me working on coaching myself and listening to the coach.
Lately I've been stuck. Super stuck. So stuck I can't even begin to get my mind around how to get unstuck. And it sucks. And then this happened...
I had some down time over Christmas so I was actually able to spend some time working on something that I really like to work on...Mighty Petunia. I changed the theme of the website after getting some great feedback from women on the Mighty Petunia Facebook page. They gave me honest feedback on what they thought of the website. It was honest feedback and much appreciated. Some was flattering and some kinda not, but it was all good to hear.
I'm not the techiest person so when the whole "responsive" mobile site thing happened (which makes a website on your phone look like the site on your desktop), I kind of missed it. I thought my site was responsive but it wasn't. What that means bottom line, is the Mighty Petunia mobile site looked pretty crappy. Ok, really crappy. So, I took the plunge and decided to change it. It was waaay easier than I thought it was going to be and the results were awesome. I managed to change it and not screw everything up! SCORE!!!
A couple of days after I changed the site, I was contacted by someone who asked if I was interested in submitting Mighty Petunia tanks for a segment at the beginning of January on a national TV show. UHH OK! So I scrambled and got everything together. Not sure if Mighty Petunia will make the cut, but it won't be for lack of trying! And if it does happen, it will be a great way to start off 2016!
SO the lesson for me once again (I seem to have to keep learning this one) is that a) doing something, anything, usually starts the ball rolling on change and b) working on something I like makes it easy to create change and gets me unstuck. A little success is a contagious thing. I feel like I can start to tackle other areas of my life that are stuck and I'm beginning to feel maybe I'm not quite as stuck as I thought.
Wanna get unstuck? Do something. Do anything. Work on things you like to work on. Change the easy things first. Now's the time. The new year is a great time to make changes. Good luck and Happy New Year!
Blogging is a really awkward thing to me. In addition to letting everyone in my head, it gives people an insight into how I feel. To a closet introvert (and badass), this is really uncomfortable. But, I do it anyway. Why? Because it's part of the gig. When you decide to launch a brand and build it through social media, blogging is an effective tool.
Where it gets sticky,for me, is the feeling of being/appearing to be an authority. And I am sooo not that. My education isn't grounded in fitness. I struggle to follow a nutrition plan consistently. Sometimes I'm great at following a workout program and some months, I don't step foot in a gym. If I'm an authority on anything it is how NOT to do it! And that's why I started Mighty Petunia. I know how hard it is to stay consistent, motivated, and inspired.
There's an ebb and flow to motivation. It's like a gossamer thread that you can grasp for a period of time, but then it breaks and you have to grind it out. I was new to fitness when I heard about the grind for the first time. The grind is that time when the newness of the program you're following has worn off, maybe results have slowed down or even stopped, and you have to keep going. And it isn't easy. Plus,sadly, there is no way around it. You gotta go through it to get to the other side. Finding people like Jill Coleman, Jen Sinkler, Lean Bodies Consulting and others, help to inspire me daily. Learning tricks, like putting my tennis shoes on when my feet hit the floor in the morning, sleeping in my workout clothes so I will make the early morning workout, reading something motivational before bedtime, and yes, wearing motivational phrases on my tanks, all really help me. When I need motivation I can find it IF I look for it.
So take it from an expert (kinda), if you need motivation, it's out there. Check out:
And don't forget http://www.mightypetunia.com for motivational tanks.
Recently I got tired. I'm talking really burned-out dog-tired. Everything was an effort. It was like walking through mud. During the day, things seemed alot more difficult than normal. Forget getting a second wind after work to build an e-commerce business. And working out? Not happening. I beat myself up the whole time. "How can I be so lazy?" "Why can't I get my butt in gear?" "I AM SUCH A LOSER!!!!" Mighty Petunia is all about catching the motivational bus and I couldn't even find the bus stop!
So, I sat myself down to figure out what the deal was. Here's what I got to... I WAS TIRED. Period. The End. Nothing fancy. I had been fitting a lot of work into each day. I hadn't been planning my days out to make time for workout, family, friends. I just got up in the morning and let the day push me around. And, business tended to make the most noise so it got the most attention...from the time I woke up in the morning until the time I went to bed. It was too much. All work and no play makes Mighty Petunia a tired woman.
How did I fix it? I rested. And rested. I took a full week and consciously focused on not working so much. Not a vacation mind you. I had a pretty grueling week at my full-time job but I didn't work on Mighty Petunia at all. I didn't work on social media. I didn't read motivational stuff. I just checked out of Mighty Petunia for a week. Guess what happened? Nothing. Mighty Petunia didn't collapse. It didn't fail. It was fine. But, one morning, I woke up ready to go. I had my second wind. I had a zillion ideas. I started an activity journal to keep track of all that is going on so I don't have to waste energy keeping track of everything in my head. I made decisions that I had put off because I didn't have the energy to make them. I delegated more. I started being more protective of my energy...viewing it as a limited resource. I made more conscious decisions about where I wanted to spend my energy. And, I have been rewarded with renewed energy. A second wind.
I think we tend to think of a second wind as something that we need when we're doing something physical. Something that requires breath. But, I think we can similarly need a mental second wind. So the next time you find yourself burned-out dog-tired and struggling through the day, give yourself permission to take a break for however long it takes. You will get your second wind.
If truth be told, I've tried yoga a few times. Ok... a lot of times. And each time, I decide I'm just not a yoga person. I have lots of reasons. Yoga isn't fast enough. My mind wanders too much. I'm bored. Well, I tried it again today and learned something about myself. I'm a yoga weinie. I SAY it's because yoga isn't fast enough. I SAY it's because my mind wanders. I SAY it's because I'm bored, but the realization I had today as I was in Child's Pose while everyone else was perfectly emulating the instructor's pose (which wasn't Child's Pose), is that I hate being inept. Ten minutes into the class I'm sweating like a dog ("Why is no one else sweating like me? I'm so out of shape."). I'm the only one that has to use the blocks because my hammies are so tight that I can't reach the floor ("I'm getting so old. I should have taken better care of myself.") I have no idea what 80% of the poses are so I get frustrated. But here's the crazy thing. I got through the class! It wasn't pretty. It wasn't elegant. And, even though I started out a yoga wienie, at the end I felt freaking AWESOME! Maybe it was the equivalent of a runner's high...is there a yoga high? But, for the rest of the day, I felt super!
I've thought about this experience all day and wondered what else my negative self-talk is preventing me from experiencing? Golf is a perfect example. My husband and I used to play together alot. And then he got good. I'm talking really good. So I quit. Yep, I'm a golf wienie. Golf had become a 4 hour opportunity to tell myself how terrible I was because I couldn't compete with my husband. I'd come off the course feeling frustrated and resentful that he had spent several years working on his golf game and had the nerve to get better! So in addition to taking away a great reason to be outside for 4 hours on a beautiful day, I also spent less time with my husband doing something fun.
So, here's the plan. I got a 2 week pass to a local yoga studio and I'm trying 4 different yoga classes (not hot yoga though..how in the world do people do that?) and work on enjoying the experience and keeping the self-talk to a minimum. I've also decided to get back out on the driving range and practice green after dinner a couple nights a week to work on my game. I think I'm even going to suggest date night each week over the summer be a round of golf. My husband may stroke out.
Are there things in your life that negative self-talk is stopping you from achieving participating in or enjoying? What would you do or try if you weren't so tough on yourself? It won't be easy. But when I think about how great I will feel when I can be at the front of the yoga class and not in the last row or how nice it will be walking out on the golf course with my hubby on a beautiful summer evening the effort it will take seems worthwhile. What's your plan?
I'm the kind of person who is either all the way on or all the way off. When the alarm rings in the morning, my eyes spring open and my feet hit the floor. I'm AWAKE!! When I start a new project, I'm 100% in and enthusiastic. I want to sleep, eat and breathe it so I can up to speed on whatever it is, really quickly. So, in these instances, it's great.
But, if we're talking about working a diet/nutrition plan, that's where it becomes not so great. I can be cruising along, no worries. Compliance is great and then all of a sudden, cave to a craving or intentionally make a bad choice, and I start going down the path of "I just ruined 3 weeks of great compliance, might as well eat the whole pizza". Then that choice leads to another which leads to another and I'm off my plan. It's taken time and a lots of failures to realize that I don't have to be all the way on or all the way off. I can just be. There are ebbs and flows that I need to learn to deal with for real change to occur. It's just all part of it.
A really smart man I know (Norman Shub of the Gestalt Institute) says that "ALL CHANGE IS INCREMENTAL". As much as I want to be 100% on, whether its nutrition, workout, whatever, it really isn't realistic to expect that I will hit it all the time. The want can be there. The desire can be there. But if I'm really going to change something, I have to deal with the setbacks and not let the setbacks tank the whole process. If I've eaten the pizza (or ice cream or chips), I need to dust off, and get back on plan at the next meal and not skip meals for the rest of the day/or two (we've all done it) in order to "make up" for what I've done.
Probably one of the best people/sites that I follow is JillfitPhysiques (http://www.jillfit.com). She writes of her past struggles and how she worked it out mentally. Pretty inspiring stuff. Check it out.
So, tonight I had 2 pieces of pizza when I should have had turkey, brown rice and veggies. So tomorrow for breakfast I'll be back on plan...yogurt, fruit and peanut butter. And I'm going to enjoy every bit. No worries. Just learning.