I was recently approached and asked to share advice on how to avoid the common pitfalls that are caused by lack of nourishment. With this question in mind I feel like we first have to ask,
What is nourishment?
Google says that nourish means: Provide with the food or other substances necessary for growth, health, and good condition. Enhance the fertility of. Keep (a feeling or belief) in one's mind, typically for a long time. If you're asking me, to nourish oneself means to take care of you, so you get that Tiger Blood, the fountain of youth feeling, that energy that starts the moment you wake in the morning and lasts late into the evening. Nourishment means filling your cup up first! There are 5 things that come to my mind immediately when I think of this and you can start implementing today!
First, find a routine
You don't necessarily have to stick with it, but at least you know you have it to fall back on. In getting to know myself, I realize that I am kind of a stinker about sticking to a routine. I haven't been able to put my finger on it yet, but even when I find one that works for me, I tend to stray from it after about a month's time. I've learned to accept this! The bottom line is I have found a routine that works for me, that I know I can go back to at any time, so I allow myself the flexibility to fall off the wagon a little and recognize when I need to come back. Then, when it's time to reel myself in again and get back on that horse, I already have a system in place that works for me. There are COUNTLESS morning routines you can do. I first got on a good groove with my morning routine after reading The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod, then this past January, I developed my own morning routine focused around my Breath Core Balance theory. It really can be as simple as Googling or Pinterest searching something like effective morning routines.
Second, Be good to yourself
Practice self love and compassion relentlessly. Let it spill out and carry into how you feel and care towards others too. Give yourself the space to step away from negative situations. Practice breathing. Get to know yourself better. Say positive things to yourself each morning. Be grateful for this life you are living! All these things are easier said than done, of course. I guarantee you this is not going to come naturally, especially due to the unfortunate circumstances of our present day society that is constantly promoting the lie of "all the things wrong with us." This is why it is crucial you make this a practice. You are wonderful! Right now, just the way you are. Accept yourself! Post sticky notes around your home with positive reminders, write something fantastic and positive across your bathroom mirror with dry-erase marker, put a background on your phone, look yourself in the eye and say, "I love you."
Third, Laugh often and do things you genuinely enjoy
Never ever underestimate the power of laughter. To be able to laugh at yourself, to laugh things off, to just smile in general; it all feels so good! In my yoga classes I am constantly reminding my students to smile and never take themselves too seriously. I like to say especially if you feel silly, then laugh! Smile and laugh at yourself! Who cares what you look like or what you might actually be smiling about. Just do it because it feels good and you are making a commitment to take care of yourself! I especially love doing this with music. Car dancing, prancing around my apartment, singing at the top of my lungs to my favorite positive, upbeat songs. You can easily find this through movement, yoga, exercise, cooking, being in nature. The opportunities are endless. I highly recommend finding something that you can indulge in alone that does not require the presence of other people. Of course, share with others, but do not depend on them. Find whatever gets you to that happy space and embrace it fully!
Fourth: Plan & Prep
The good ol' plan and prep. Never ever ending, never ever fails. I think the most common thought when we hear the word nourish is for our brains to go to food and nutrition. I could write an entire blog post on this subject alone (and I think I will!), but for now simple steps. Think about your meals for the week, write out what is available so you know what you have to eat - your brain likes a plan! - and always, always, always bring snacks and water (my fav: with lemon) with you everywhere you go. To truly get started my advice is to find what foods harmonize with your unique body system (hello, whole30), eat accordingly, be happy, repeat. It sounds so simple, yet food goes so much deeper than that, which is why it's extremely challenging for us all to find what works best for us and then stick to that. The best thing you can do is read your labels (it shouldn't take a science lab or an in-depth Google search) and if you are like me and want to support companies who genuinely care about you and your health, then take the time to research them online (recently came across GoMacro and love the looks of this company)!
Practice forgiveness and growth
Above all else, practice forgiveness and get into a growth mindset. You should know right now that you are going to fail. Don't worry, you will also succeed. However, failing is a part of learning. It is essential for growth. Why that is not something we are taught growing up still has me baffled. Every thing has a learning curve. Even our natural talents can be honed, fine tuned, and improved upon. Whenever I catch myself trying to beat up on myself for one thing or another - something I ate, staying up too late, not working out, whatever it may be - I laugh! I shrug it off because I know better than to treat myself that way. We are constantly learning and growing and so long as you learn and grow from every situation that comes at you in life, you are going to make it far, my friend. So keep on keeping on!
I once heard somewhere that the difference between inspiration and motivation is whether or not you feel a fire ignited on the inside or you are pushed by outside surroundings. This article is about getting that motivation on the outside - the motivation, setting yourself up for success to feel like you still actually want to do your workout. Another time I will write about finding that fiery passion within.
1. Set out your workout clothes + shoes + accessories
Give your self ZERO room for any excuses. When I am serious about getting into a new routine and creating new habits, I set myself up for success with this little tip. For example on a night where I plan to run the next morning I will lay out my pants, undies, bra, tank, socks, shoes, pull-over jacket, and set out my rain jacket just in case. I also make sure my wireless headphones are charged and sitting by the door, so I can literally just grab-n-go! This is easy to implement into any fitness routine. Lay out your clothes, any accessories you might wear like a fit-bit, or arm sleeve to put your iPod in (an old sock works wonders btw), and if you exercise at home layout your exercise equipment in advance too!
2. Set up your audio preferences
If you like listening to music when you workout set that playlist up in advance! Spotify and Apple Music allow you to create your own playlists. If you are like me and you use Pandora still, pick a station that you know will play all the good tunes or listen to a book while you workout! At least when I am running, I very much enjoy listening to audio books. For harder workouts where I am pushing myself through and have to give more focus and energy is a different story...
3. Have a tracker
I just LOVE having a monthly tracker to be able to put a little checkmark on the calendar to say that I completed my day! It definitely motivates me to keep up with daily habits because this allows me to look back over the month and see how many workouts I actually got in. You can imagine I don't feel super awesome when I look back over a week or more and see that I've been slacking. I also like to add a little star to the days that I ate well too. There are trackers included in my free 1-month morning ritual guide and with the purchase of The Base Kit program too!
4. Get an accountabilibuddy
Research shows that having someone to hold you accountable will help you out a ton! Ask a friend to get into the same healthy routine as you or contact the healthy friend you know and tell them that you're getting started and you want an accountability partner. No matter which route you go, it's nice to have someone to either show up with together or just a simple text/message to say Hey! I got my workout in today, how about you! I find this works best when you are working with someone towards similar goals, but it all comes down to your motivation-style.
5. Have a plan
Don't just wing it. I repeat. Do not just wing it! I have tried this time and time again and it never works. Never ever. The brain likes a plan, it's true. If you do not have a solid plan in play, I can 99.95% guarantee you will find an excuse and bail. You may have every single other part of these tips all laid out, but if you don't know if you're going for a run, planning to lift some weights, or work on your body-weight exercises then, if you even end up working out, your entire effort is going to be half assed - because you don't know what you're doing! Plan in advance. You'll thank yourself later.
All in all, remember you must find what works for you in order for something to stick, become the habit you want it to be, and then change your life the way you desire. Remember, failing is part of learning. When you realize something isn't working for you, don't be afraid to move on and try something else! Good luck out there!