How Do We Make Healthy Changes? by Stephanie Nickel

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The feet reflection by Bobbi Jones

The feet reflection by Bobbi Jones

How Do We Make Healthy Changes?

Baby Steps by Stephanie Nickel

A little knowledge can be a dangerous thing.

I don’t know who said it first, but there is much truth in it. What do I know about a healthy lifestyle?

I know . . .

I must study God’s Word, pray, and fellowship with other believers to grow strong as a Christian.

I know . . .

I must get adequate rest, eat more fruits and vegetables, drink more water, increase my cardiovascular strength through physical activity that gets my blood pumping, and build my bones and muscles by resistance training.

I know . . .

I must ward off my natural tendency to procrastinate by prioritizing my Action Plan and accomplishing things in order of importance.

I know . . .

I must balance spending time with friends and family, accomplishing the writing and editing before me (and that which will come my way), and tending to my home.

I know . . .

I must get serious about The Great Declutter if it’s actually going to happen this year.

I know. I know. I know.

However, I must go beyond “head knowledge” and put these things into practice.

Baby steps . . .

This year I am focussing on baby steps.

I have chosen a chapter of John to memorize and have joined the One-Minute Prayer Challenge. I have begun meeting with another mom to pray for our children. These are steps that will lead me to spiritual health, which I believe to be the most important aspect of a healthy lifestyle.

As far as physical health goes, I’m slowly ratcheting things up. I’ve committed to eating sweets only two days per week, most often on the weekends. I’ve also added cardio to the schedule. This week, I’ve kept moving for five minutes per day. Next week, it will be ten. I will continue until I am at thirty minutes per day five days per week. I’ve also taken The Plank Challenge. I may have to progress more slowly than the schedule suggests, but as long as I’m progressing . . .

In February, I will add resistance training, twice a week for the first two weeks, then three times per week after that.

I’m not ready to eliminate sweets altogether, but it doesn’t take long to begin to crave healthier foods. I’d forgotten how quickly I could turn things around with a little self-control. It doesn’t hurt that, with age, high sugar foods make me feel unwell. That’s actually a good thing.

I’m adding to my herbal tea supply. That will help me increase my water intake – while keeping me warm.

I had a slow start this January, which proved to be quite a blessing. There are some big changes going on in our family and it has been good to slowly get used to them without being buried under a mountain of unavoidable responsibilities.

As I’ve often said, “When I cross one thing off my Procrastination List, it’s as satisfying as crossing ten from my Everyday List.” And I have been doing so with increasing frequency.

Decluttering has been something on my mind for some time. But in keeping with maintaining a reasonable pace, I allow myself to rejoice over one drawer emptied of what we no longer need or spending an hour sorting paperwork (which must be one of the most time-consuming things that really doesn’t look to make much difference).

Although I can be tempted to cocoon at home, as my friend calls it, I am blessed to spend time with friends. I just have to pace myself . . . since I have work to achieve at home and being more careful with our funds is also on this year’s list of things to accomplish.

Hopefully, prayerfully, by December 2014, I will be healthier all round, but I will only get there by taking baby steps.

How about you? Do you make changes best by moving slowly in the right direction or by jumping in feet first?

 

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Stephanie Nickel

 

Steph Beth Nickel is an author, a freelance editor and writer, a labour doula, and a former personal trainer. She’d love to connect with you on Facebook or Twitter, on her website or blog.

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One thought on “How Do We Make Healthy Changes? by Stephanie Nickel

  1. Pingback: What are the Benefits of a Fitness Challenge by Stephanie Nickel | Kimberley J. Payne

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