It’s National Nutrition Month and the theme, Put Your Best Fork Forward, has me thinking about the trouble with DREAMING BIG. It’s great to dream big and set big goals for yourself because nothing is impossible. The trouble is when we dream big yet forget how powerful the little things can be.
For instance, when we are finding excuses for ourselves, it’s easy to devalue our small actions. We say, “what’s one bite?” or “What’s one day going to hurt?”
Our habits are a sum of our actions and each action counts toward that sum. Once we embrace this concept, we can keep ourselves on track and accountable.
Small things add up. Baby steps count as steps.
Another way to think about it: People wouldn’t keep a change jar if it didn’t add up.
So we can devalue those small things and let them set us back or we can realize the power in them and use that to our advantage. If you choose the latter, scroll down to see 5 baby steps worth considering. Try one or try them all and be consistent. When you do, you’ll be putting your best fork forward!
- Put your fork down between bites. This is a simple way to start eating mindfully. It forces you to slow down. Consequently, you become more aware of your hunger/fullness signals and increase the chance of eating no more than what your body needs.
- Eat more fruit and less cakes, cookies, candies (and other high calorie sweets). Replacing processed sweets with naturally sweet foods can increase your intake of disease-fighting properties, vitamins and minerals. Now that’s a delicious way to put your best fork forward! =)
- Think about dinner at breakfast time. Dinner can be the hardest meal of the day because it’s one of the last things we think about until its 5pm. By then our will-power tank and motivation level is low. But thinking about dinner in the morning gives you a head start. You can also think about tomorrow’s breakfast at dinner time. This is a simple stepping stone to regular meal planning and prepping.
- Have one less (or one more). Quitting cold turkey isn’t for everyone. If you are trying to cut back on something like drinking sugary drinks consider doing it one at a time. If you drink 4 sodas a day, try drinking just 3, then once you achieve that move to 2 and so on. If you stick to it, the momentum will build and that will keep you motivated.
- Keep reading our Motivational Monday email. One study from Kaiser Permanente found that people who received weekly e-mails about diet and fitness for 16 weeks substantially increased their levels of physical activity and intake of healthy foods like fruits and vegetables while cutting back on trans and saturated fats.
Food for thought: What baby steps are you taking today? Tell us in the comments.