My 10 Steps Method to starting your Weight Loss Journey without overwhelm!

My 10 Steps Method to starting your Weight Loss Journey without overwhelm!

10 step method to weight loss

 

Losing weight can be a daunting task, and there are countless diets and programs that promise quick results. However, sustainable weight loss is about making small, consistent changes to your lifestyle that you can maintain over time. Here are some simple steps you can take to start losing weight sustainably:

  1. Set realistic goals: The first step to sustainable weight loss is to set realistic goals. While it may be tempting to aim for rapid weight loss, studies show that slow and steady weight loss is more effective in the long term. Set a goal to lose 1-2 pounds per week, which is a safe and achievable rate of weight loss.

  2. Keep track of what you eat: One of the most effective ways to lose weight is to keep track of what you eat. This can help you identify areas where you can make changes to your diet and make healthier choices. You can use a food journal or a tracking app to record your meals and snacks, and track your calorie intake.

  3. Make healthier food choices: Making healthier food choices is essential for sustainable weight loss. Focus on incorporating more fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains into your diet. Choose foods that are high in fibre and protein, as these can help you feel full and satisfied for longer.

  4. Avoid processed foods: Processed foods are often high in calories, sugar, and unhealthy fats, and can sabotage your weight loss efforts. Avoid foods that are high in added sugars, such as soda, candy, and baked goods, and limit your intake of processed foods like chips, frozen dinners, and fast food.

  5. Drink more water: Drinking more water can help you feel full and satisfied, and can also help you avoid sugary drinks like soda and juice. Aim to drink at least eight glasses of water a day, and carry a water bottle with you to stay hydrated throughout the day.

  6. Get moving: Exercise is an important component of sustainable weight loss. While it can be tempting to jump into a rigorous exercise program, it's important to start slowly and gradually build up your fitness level. Aim to get at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise most days of the week, such as brisk walking, cycling, or swimming.

  7. Get enough sleep: Getting enough sleep is essential for sustainable weight loss. Studies have shown that lack of sleep can disrupt hormones that regulate appetite and metabolism, and can also increase cravings for unhealthy foods. Aim to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep a night, and establish a regular sleep schedule to help regulate your body's natural sleep-wake cycle.

  8. Manage stress: Stress can be a major contributor to weight gain, as it can trigger emotional eating and disrupt healthy habits. Incorporate stress-reducing activities into your daily routine, such as meditation, yoga, or deep breathing exercises, to help manage stress and improve your overall well-being.

  9. Surround yourself with support: Losing weight can be challenging, but having a support system can make all the difference. Surround yourself with friends and family who support your weight loss goals, and consider joining a weight loss support group or working with a professional like a registered dietitian or personal trainer.

  10. Be patient: Sustainable weight loss is a journey, and it's important to be patient with yourself along the way. Focus on making small, consistent changes to your lifestyle, and celebrate your progress along the way. Remember that sustainable weight loss is about making healthy habits a part of your daily life, and that slow and steady progress is the key to long-term success.

In conclusion, sustainable weight loss is about making small, consistent changes to your lifestyle that you can maintain over time. By setting realistic goals, making healthier food choices, getting moving, and surrounding yourself with support, you can start losing weight in a way.

Here are my top 5 health and fitness tips you can start today!

You might be wondering what you can start doing TODAY to have an impact on your health and fitness ; well i've popped together my Top 5!

1.Eating a healthy and balanced diet:

Eating a diet that is high in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains can help to provide your body with the nutrients it needs to function properly and stay healthy.A balanced diet can help to maintain a healthy weight and reduce the risk of obesity and related health problems. It can also improve nutrient intake: A balanced diet can provide your body with the essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients it needs to function properly.It also reduces the risk of chronic disease, improves digestion and improved mental health.

2. Getting regular exercise:

Regular exercise has numerous benefits for overall health and well-being. It can help to improve cardiovascular health by strengthening the heart and lungs, lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels, and reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke. It also helps to build and maintain muscle and bone mass, which can reduce the risk of osteoporosis and other age-related conditions. Exercise also improves overall fitness, including endurance, strength, and flexibility. It can also help with weight management, reduce stress, anxiety, and depression, promote better sleep, improve brain function and delay cognitive decline, increase energy levels, and improve mood. Regular exercise is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle and can have a positive impact on both physical and mental health

 

3.Getting enough sleep:

Getting enough sleep is crucial for overall health and well-being. Adequate sleep is necessary for the body to repair and rejuvenate itself. When we sleep, our body produces growth hormones that help repair muscles and tissues, and our brain consolidates and processes information from the day. Lack of sleep can lead to a variety of health issues such as weight gain, depression, weakened immune system, and an increased risk of chronic diseases. Additionally, lack of sleep can also affect physical fitness, as it can lead to decreased energy levels, slowed reaction time, and impaired coordination. To improve health and fitness, it is recommended to aim for at least 7-8 hours of sleep per night, establish a regular sleep schedule, avoid screens before bedtime, and create a relaxing bedtime routine.

 

4. Managing stress:

Managing stress is an important aspect of maintaining overall health and well-being. Chronic stress can have a negative impact on both physical and mental health, leading to a variety of health issues such as headaches, muscle tension, fatigue, and increased risk of chronic diseases. Stress can also affect your physical fitness, as it can lead to decreased motivation and energy levels, making it harder to stick to an exercise routine. To manage stress, it is important to find effective ways to cope with stressors, such as through exercise, meditation, yoga, deep breathing, or talking to a therapist. Additionally, setting realistic goals, learning time management, and developing a support system can also help in managing stress. Taking care of yourself physically and emotionally can greatly improve overall health and fitness.

 

5. Avoiding smoking and excessive alcohol consumption:

 

Limiting alcohol consumption and avoiding smoking are important steps to improve overall health and fitness. Both alcohol and smoking can have negative impacts on health and can increase the risk of certain cancers and other health problems. Alcohol consumption can lead to weight gain and an increased risk of liver disease, heart disease, and certain types of cancer. Smoking is a leading cause of lung cancer and can also increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, and respiratory problems. Limiting alcohol consumption and avoiding smoking can help improve cardiovascular health, reduce the risk of cancer and other diseases, and improve overall fitness and well-being. Quitting smoking is one of the best things you.

 

Remember,improving your health and fitness is a journey that requires dedication and consistency. By setting specific, measurable goals, creating a consistent workout routine, and making healthy dietary choices, you can achieve the results you desire. Remember to also take time to rest and recover, as well as to listen to your body and make adjustments as needed. Remember that it's not about perfection, it's about progress, and every small step you take towards your goals is a step in the right direction. With a positive mindset, perseverance, and commitment, you can improve your health and fitness and lead a happier, healthier life.

 

Nikki xx

Read THIS before setting January Resolutions: 5 Top tips from a womens weight loss coach.

January is often a time when people set new resolutions for the year ahead, and for many women, that includes a goal to lose weight.

While there are many different approaches to weight loss, here are a few tips that may be helpful for women looking to shed some pounds this from January:

  1. Start by setting a specific and achievable goal. Rather than setting a broad goal like "lose weight," try setting a specific goal, such as "lose 10 pounds by February 1st." Having a specific and achievable goal will make it easier to track your progress and stay motivated.
  2. Focus on healthy eating. Weight loss is largely about creating a calorie deficit, which means you need to burn more calories than you consume. While it's important to cut calories, it's also important to make sure you're still getting the nutrients your body needs. Focus on eating whole, unprocessed foods like fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats. Avoid sugary drinks and snacks, and try to limit your intake of refined grains and processed foods.
  3. Incorporate physical activity into your routine. In addition to cutting calories, increasing your physical activity can help you lose weight and improve your overall health. Aim for 1-2 session of moderate exercise per week of between 35-55 minutes. This can include activities like walking, running, dancing, swimming, or strength training.
  4. Consider seeking professional help. If you're having trouble losing weight on your own, or if you have a lot of weight to lose, it may be helpful to seek the guidance of a healthcare professional or a registered dietitian. They can help you create a personalised plan that takes into account your unique needs and goals.
  5. Stay consistent and be patient. Weight loss is a journey, and it's important to stay consistent and be patient. It may take time to see results, and there will likely be setbacks along the way. But if you stay focused on your goals and make healthy lifestyle changes, you can achieve your weight loss goals.

Losing weight in January (or any month) is all about making healthy lifestyle changes and being consistent.

By focusing on healthy eating, increasing physical activity, and seeking professional help when needed, you can set yourself up for success in your weight loss journey.

A few more helpful tips for weight loss anytime of year:
  1. Keep track of your food intake. One of the easiest ways to cut calories is to be mindful of what you're eating and how much you're eating. Keeping a food diary or using a calorie-tracking app to help you stay on track. This can help you identify any areas where you may be able to cut back on calories, such as by skipping sugary drinks or snacking on healthier options.
  2. Don't skip meals. While it may seem like a good idea to skip meals in an effort to cut calories, this can actually backfire. Skipping meals can lead to overeating later on and may cause your body to go into "starvation mode," which can slow down your metabolism and make it harder to lose weight. Instead of skipping meals, try to eat regular, balanced meals and snacks throughout the day.
  3. Stay hydrated. Drinking enough water is important for overall health, and it can also help with weight loss. Aim to drink at least 1-2 litres ounces of water per day, and more if you're exercising or it's hot outside. Water can help fill you up and keep you hydrated, which can make it easier to stick to your healthy eating plan.
  4. Find a support system. Losing weight can be challenging, and it can be helpful to have a support system to help you stay motivated and on track. Consider finding a friend or family member who can be your accountability partner, or join a support group or online forum for people working towards similar goals.
  5. Don't get discouraged. It's important to remember that weight loss is a journey, and it may take time to see results. It's normal to have setbacks and challenges along the way, and it's important to stay positive and keep moving forward. If you hit a roadblock, try to refocus on your goals and remind yourself of why you're working to lose weight.

I hope these additional tips are helpful! Remember to focus on making healthy lifestyle changes that you can sustain over the long term, rather than trying to follow a quick fix or fad diet.

Nikki xx

Is STRESS Making You FAT?!- My 5 Step Method to Improve your stress and lose more weight TODAY!

Is STRESS Making You FAT?!- My 5 Step Method to Improve your stress and lose more weight TODAY!

In todays article I want to take you through a secret formula;

One that you may not even be aware of!

Something that can hold back ALL your weight loss efforts...

STRESS - and how it can totally STALL your weight loss progress.

But fear not! My easy 5 step method to manage your stress will help you start taking action TODAY to improve your weight loss.

 

A recent study in April 2020 recognised that with elevated stress levels but 19% people lost up to 55% less body fat than their counterparts who did not recognise levels of elevated distress!

 

 

The Basics of STRESS

Levels of "the stress hormone," cortisol, rise during tension-filled times.

This can turn your overeating into a habit.

Because increased levels of the hormone also help cause higher insulin levels, your blood sugar drops and you crave sugary, fatty foods.

Most of us think we know what stress is and how it feels:

But another, more subtle kind of stress can lurk beneath the surface...

 

Hidden Stressors

It’s what happens inside our bodies when we’re continually exposed to the din of construction noise, the uncertainty of a pandemic, the scars of childhood trauma, or the never-ending pressures of parenthood, work, and finances.

These hidden stressors can be so constant that we don’t register them. They’re a part of the backdrop, woven seamlessly into our “normal.”

Over time, however, as they accumulate, hidden stressors can wear us down— leaving us feeling foggy, listless, tired, bloated, and sore.

 

SO ... What is Stress Bod?

When we have a Stress Bod, we might not feel rested, even after sleeping more than 8 hours. So we turn to caffeine, sugar, salt, and fat as energy-sustaining (and coping) substances.

And if we ignore our body’s messages to “take it easy” and instead try to power through an intense workout, we’ll likely find that we can’t pump out as many reps or lift as heavy or run as quickly as we used to.

We might even get injured or sick.

Now, heres the good news...

This is important:

If you’ve been beating yourself up for skipping workouts, gulping down boxes of toaster pastries, or mindlessly scrolling social media when you’re supposed to be, a-hem, working, we’ve got four words for you:

Give yourself a break.

 

You might be in a situation that happens to be incredibly common, especially this year, given the general state of uncertainty and unrest unfolding all around us.

For example, in April 2020, the percentage of people living in the UK who were experiencing significant mental distress rose to 27 percent of people surveyed, up from 19 percent the year before.

You’re not stuck. You can do something about this.

 

First up we need to IDENTIFY THE EFFECTS OF STRESS

The guys at Precision Nutrition do a great job of illustrating this one:

Do any of these resonate with you?

Tips your stress levels are too high
But WAIT! Theres more hidden stressors:
Hidden stressors
So whats this all CALLED Nikki?

YOUR TOTAL COMBINED STRESS LOAD IS CALLED YOUR ALLOSTATIC LOAD- IT HAS TO BE MANAGED TO GET THE WEIGHT LOSS RESULTS YOU'RE LOOKING FOR!*

*Just a side note- allostatic load is NOT just the negative stressors on your life; exercise whilst beneficial is a stressor and has to be managed to get you the results you're looking for. You cannot become your Best Version Yet whilst juggling an overload of stress.

 

The 6 Step Method to Fix Stress Bod:

1- RULE OUT OTHER HEALTH ISSUES

Your GP or Dr can rule out any underlying health concerns such as anemia first and foremost.

 

2-LOOK OUT FOR HIDDEN STRESSORS

That might take the form of;

3-LOG YOUR STRESSES 

At the start of your day: Wake time, how you feel, how you slept, heart rate and temperature

During the Day- What you eat/drink, how you feel, exposure to hidden stressors

At the end of your day; How you feel, time you go to sleep

4-MINIMISE STRESS

5- FOCUS ON MAKING MICRO PROGRESS 

Quality nutrition, sleep and self care can minimise the impact of stress on stalling your weight loss nut like with anything in life, an all or nothing approach is counterproductive!

Focus instead on your health practices like dials; experiment with turning them up a notch at a time:

Health Dials

 

If you'd like to watch my FREE Webinar on the topic click here: WATCH ME

Love and Light

 

Nikki x

 

 

The Simple 5 Step Process Will Help You Lose Weight With Your Morning Routine

How to harness the power of your morning routine for weight loss in 5 simple steps!

Firstly what is a morning routine, and whats the big deal when it comes to weight loss?

Lots of my new clients look at me with a quizzical look when i explain to them initially that we're going to take a look at their morning routine;

But WHY Nikki?

How is THAT going to help me lose weight?

Allow me to explain...

What is a morning routine?

It's a set of habits or motions that you go through when you wake up.

It helps to set your day up in the right way and can have some drastic effects on your focus and productivity.

You could do anything from exercising and journaling to reading and meditating.

 

Whats the benefits of creating a bulletproof process for a morning routine?

The morning routine helps us set the tone for the day, better allowing us to control our emotions, schedules and lives rather than our day controlling us.

As we start each day fresh, we can better focus on what is in front of us, where to prioritise our energy, time, and, ultimately, increase our productivity and feeling of fulfilment

 

The simplest way to think about the benefits it to imagine the...

COFFEE CUP analogy:

 

Coffee Cup process

 

Are you struggling with your weight?

Waking feeling harassed?

Stressed before you even begin the day?

Irritable from the get go?

These are common complaints from new Coaching clients.

And not being a 'morning' person isnt to blame! Find out why!

 

Imagine yourself like a coffee cup every morning:

Do you wake up every day full to the brim with worries, self doubt, stress, anxiety, busyness?

Your imaginary coffee cup is full, so the smallest thing means you dont feel you have space to deal with it, and its starts to overflow!

Now Imagine, How it would feel to wake with an empty coffee cup every morning....

What are Micros Stress Doses?

Micro stress doses (or MSDs) are little hits of stress which can from the growing list of emails that we still need to respond to, notifications about payments due on the energy bill, or guilt we may feel for not checking in with our elderly parents.

These all add to our coffee cup overflowing each morning.

Why is this relevant?!

Multiple studies show how stress and lack of sleep can lead to an increase in your cortisol levels.

Increased cortisol and constantly being in a fight/flight or freeze response leads to higher higher levels, less emotional resilience and willpower and ultimately weight gain!

Ok Nikki, so how do i empty the coffee cup?

 

Your morning routine is one of the best places to start!

And by implementing a few of the following tips into your daily life it can dramatically reduce your stress and anxiety levels and lead to a calmer more fulfilled and productive day!

Theres some simple steps to creating a morning routine that will stick!

Step 1:

Decide what you want to acheive....

Before deciding on a highly demanding morning ritual, consider what you need to achieve and work backwards from there. If you have to make it to work on time, clean, well-dressed, and fully caffeinated, start with building a routine that allows you to do that—and then you can add in some weight training or meditation.

On the other hand, if you struggle to get focused in the mornings, maybe a bit of physical activity or mindfulness practice is exactly what you’re after.

 

Step 2:

Don’t go overboard all at once...

Like with any self-improvement plan, it’s easy to go from zero to 100 and back to zero again with your morning routine.

The easiest way to build new morning habits is to piggyback them onto your existing routines. You can easily use the time you wait for your coffee to cool—which you probably spend scrolling through social media—journaling, if that’s what you want.

If you want to work on meditation, start with five minutes as soon as you get out of bed, or even 10 mindful breaths in the shower.

 

Step 3:

Morning routines start the night before

Consider the ideal ritual you’re trying to build and look for both trouble points and opportunities to do more the night before. If there’s a way to head off a predictable potential problem with a bit of preparation, take it.

While most of the focus is on what you do after you wake up, what you do before you even go to bed can determine how successful your morning routine will be.

If you want to get to the gym, don’t start your day digging through your laundry—take the time to get your washing done and leave your bag packed and ready before bed

 

Step 4:

 

Stick with it

Once the initial flush of excitement fades, sticking with new routines is hard work.

Obviously, everyone will miss a day from time to time, but it’s important to not let skipping your routine become the routine. If life gets in the way, don’t overthink it and just continue where you left off.

 

Step 5:

Adapt and thrive

There is no perfect morning routine—only the one that’s perfect for you. And it is perfect because it gets what you need done, and therefore, you can stick to it.

If your morning routine still isn’t coming together despite your best intentions, then take a step back and reconsider what you’re doing. Change a few things, iron out any trouble points, and try again

 

I hope thats given you some insight on how to harness the power of your morning routine for weight loss in 5 simple steps

 

Your Future Coach

 

Nikki x

 

 

SOS! Scales Fluctuations

SOS! Scales Fluctuations!

I wanted to explain something to you today that KEEPS COMING UP! I'm sure you can relate to feeling stressed AF over the scales and their fluctuations at some point? I'm going to explain the REASONS behind WHY they fluctuate & why you don't need to FREAK OUT every time they do!

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This is genuinely one of the BIGGEST and MOST COMMON issues ladies I work with encounter throughout their fitness journey. We've been programmed to be absolutely horrified when we see the scales go up. We've been conditioned to think of ANY gain as a bad thing. We're so used to being scales focused as females, it's extremely difficult to be 'ok' with seeing them either not change, or go in the opposite direction.
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I feel lots of head nods happening right now...I've been there too! It was a big struggle for me to wrap my head around why the scales weren't dropping even though I'd been ticking all the boxes & working really hard...
THE SCALES FLUCTUATE FOR SO MANY DIFFERENT REASONS!
When a new client comes on board and has previously struggled with having a scales-focused mentality, as a coach, it's my duty to educate them as to WHY these fluctuations happen and lessen the stress they are feeling around weighing themselves. As I always say; when you UNDERSTAND something, it becomes much less daunting!So, let's take a look at some of the reasons you may see the scales fluctuate....

Screenshot 2022 10 10 at 20.35.32

So, as you can see, there are quite a few reasons why the scales can fluctuate, even day to day! 

Heavy leg day? Hello inflammation!Time of the month? Hello bloating & water retention! Hormones have a huge impact on the scales.Eat a heavy-carb meal last night? You're full of glycogen & pulling more water into your muscles! A high sodium meal will also mean excess water retention in the body.Digestive issues/feeling blocked up? Then it makes sense that the scales reflect the fact you have lots of food sitting in your gut! Dehydrated? Fluid loss = drop on scales (not the good kind)!Bad sleep? Feeling super stressed? Yup, you guessed it, scales will be up due to elevated cortisol levels.Eating different meals one day to the next? With differing food volume going in, the scales will be much more likely to go up & down, if meals are more consistent / stay the same day to day, there will be less fluctuations. Taking medication? Many medications can interact with the scales, so if you notice a spike when you've started a new pill, anti-biotic, or any other kind of medication, don't fret!

The scales don't tell us everything, but they're a useful tool!
Other things you may want to consider when weighing yourself is the time & frequency you weigh yourself. Weighing daily = accurate & allows you to monitor fluctuations. Weighing weekly = much more inaccurate & doesn't show you a weekly picture. If you weigh yourself at 6am with no food or drink in you, vs 6pm when you've trained, eaten, drank, been to work and whatever else, then you're going to be a completely different weight - a few kilos is very normal to gain throughout the day. 

I hope this email helped you Nikki. And please, if you have any questions about scale fluctuations & why they might be happening to you, just reach out by replying to this email! 
Until next time, Love and Light,
Nikki xx

Why GOAL setting is the Number 1 thing you need for success. The surprising benefits you didn’t know about:

Why GOAL setting is the Number 1 thing you need for success. The 9 surprising benefits you didn’t know about:

Why set goals? I this question a lot from my clients. Until quite recently , it didn’t previously occur to me that there is a lot of misunderstanding and confusion about goals and why they're so vital for your progress...

People just don’t know why they set goals and what the benefits are. If they do it, it’s because someone told them it is important. But do you actually know why?

To me, goal setting is a natural thing to do, but even I find a great motivation to “remind” myself why is it important to set goals.

I say it's a "natural' thing for me to do; when i actually thats not entirely true: I've conditioned myself over years of sporting events, or dance shows and bodybuilding competitions to understand innately the benefits to my progress when i have clearly defined goals and a vision set out ahead of me.

So what's the purpose of setting a goal:

Goal setting may seem like an arduous task but without the following you cannot expect yourself to make and continue to keep making life changing choices and decisions.

Goal setting/ Vision Planning helps us align our actions with the things we value most highly and reverse engineer that outcome to happen.

 

Think of the concept like this:

 

You jump in your car, pop the Sat-Nav on and start driving... but where to?... why? ... what are you hoping to achieve? Are you going the right way?

Compare that instead to having crystal clear defined goals and outcomes; You jump in your car with a specific destination in mind, you know exactly what route to take, how long it likely to be, any potential hold ups on route and you are clear about where you are going!

Makes it muuuuuuucccccchhhhhh easier to stick with the route. Your goals for your weight loss are no different.

Goal setting helps us by giving us:

How do you set bullet proof goals?

This is my bullet proof formula to set out my intentions for my life goals, but also for my health and fitness too. Its a process i learned from one of my great  mentors; Tony Robbins and today I'm going to share that with you 💕
Top Tips:
Sit down with a blank piece. of paper and a pen and brain dump: What do I wanna achieve in the next 3 months, 12 months, 5 years, 10 years, 25 years?
Write as far as you can see into the future. (these need to be reviewed daily and measured daily/ weekly monthly etc)
I usually set goals at the end of the year around Christmas time where i can seclude myself for 1 hour and write.
1. Write everything down ( If its in your head it's dead)
2. Brainstorm list anything like to achieve, give, have or do over next period of life (unstructured it best just write and flow)
3. Break this down into categories- things and stuff, experiences, economic/financial, career/business- growth, health and fitness, contribution. Set a 30 mins timer in total and spend a maximum of 5 mins on each section.
4. Time bounding - Go through your list and number them in accordance to when you'd like to achieve them by 1,5,10,15,20 (years)
5. The Next step is to Focus down- Get specific on your next 12 months ; Chose your top 5, most balanced goals to work towards.
6. Write down your top 5- the "why' must absolutely be within the next 12 months.
7. Make every goal SMART- metrics for each to show how you'll measure them. For instance " I want to lose 10lb" becomes "I want to lose 10lb and drop 1 dress size by May 2023 and i'll do this by exercising 2 x per week and following a macro nutrition meal template" 
8. Share those goals with a few people, mentors etc accountability to someone in your peer group is vital to make it become a reality.

Ultimately setting goals, achieving goals and even failing goals helps you learn… learn about yourself, learn about others.

And this helps you learn, change and grow to become your Best Version Yet.

If you'd like more personalised help with your goal setting dont hesitate to reach out!

Id be happy to help!

 

Love and Light,

 

Nikki xGoals, goal setting, medal

 

 

Have you Lost your Health and Fitness Mojo since the Summer has ended?

Have you Lost your Health and Fitness Mojo since the Summer has ended?

Summer nights where healthy grilled BBQ meats are plentiful, you grab a nice fresh salad throw it together with some chicken and a jacket potato.
Or you sit outside to dinner in the evening watching the sun go down.
It’s only natural that when the nights draw in earlier and there’s less natural sunshine and daylight most of us find find ourselves reaching for the comfort food.
Grabbing a biscuit or two with a warm cup of tea or coffee, or reaching for another square of chocolate after dinner.
There’s no surprise at all when natural daylight diminishes the likelihood of us choosing foods we seasonally and habitually chose more of in summer months also declines.
Many of the population today find themselves struggling through the winter months with lacking motivation and a general lack lustre for day to today.
Your Best Version Yet slowly seems to be slipping through your fingers?
Did you know that many people begin to suffer with SAD (seasonal affective disorder) at this time of year. The symptoms usually start in the early autumn or winter and improve in the spring.
It's thought the winter blues, or seasonal affective disorder (SAD), affects around 2 million people in the UK and more than 12 million people across northern Europe. It can affect people of any age, including children.
The nature and severity of SAD varies from person to person.
Some people just find the condition a bit irritating, while for others it can be severe and have a significant impact on their day-to-day life.
The NHS give guidelines on suggested symptoms for SAD
Other symptoms include
These symptoms may make every day activities increasingly difficult.
Two relatively simple method to assist with the symptoms SAD or just that winter slump as recommended by NICE ( National Institute for Health Care Excellence) are
Lower levels of vitamin D (the type you get from natural sunlight) can result in the thinning or brittle bones, osteoporosis, or frequent bone fractures. muscle weakness, particularly if there is an unexplained change in muscle strength. changes in mood, with people who have low vitamin D experience anxiety or depression.
And I think we’d all agree that we’d rather keep those things at bay.
In recent government studies it showed a whopping 1 in 5 of us are deficient in vitamin D during winter and autumn months which can be lined to our choices of food and the sources we get our daily dose of vitamin D from.
In spring and summer, most of us get enough vitamin D from sunlight on our skin and a healthy, balanced diet.
During autumn and winter the sun isn't strong enough in the UK to produce vitamin D. That means we have to rely on getting it just from the food we eat.
Because it's difficult to get enough vitamin D from food alone, many of us risk not getting enough.
Taking a supplement helps to keep levels of the vitamin topped up during the colder months.
Some suggestions for foods high in Vitamin D include
Top 10 Foods rich in Vitamin D
1. Salmon
2. Tinned Tuna
3. Mushrooms
4. Fortified Milk
5. Tofu
6. Yoghurt
7. Eggs
8. Pork Chops
9. Nuts
10. Beans
During the autumn and winter, you need to get vitamin D from your diet because the sun is not strong enough for the body to make vitamin D.

But since it's difficult for people to get enough vitamin D from food alone, everyone (including pregnant and breastfeeding women) should consider taking a daily supplement containing 10 micrograms of vitamin D during the autumn and winter.

Between late March/early April to the end of September, most people can make all the vitamin D they need through sunlight on their skin and from a balanced diet.

You may choose not to take a vitamin D supplement during these months.

The recommended daily amount of vitamin D is 400 international units (IU) for children up to age 12 months, 600 IU for people ages 1 to 70 years, and 800 IU for people over 70 years.

You cannot overdose on vitamin D through exposure to sunlight. But always remember to cover up or protect your skin if you're out in the sun for long periods to reduce the risk of skin damage and skin cancer.
Love and Light,
Nikki xx

The Motivation Myth- and the Number 1 reason why you shouldn't rely on it.

The Motivation Myth- and the Number 1 reason why you shouldn't rely on it

I get it, you're feeling demotivated but you want your motivation back!

Definition

"Not having interest in or enthusiasm for something, especially work or studynot having interest in or enthusiasm for something, especially work or study.

Feeling unmotivated can be caused by a wide variety of things, but in general, it's an emotional state that's often associated with being stuck or in a rut.

You struggle to take action and feel like you're not getting anything done."

We've all had that feeling from time to time and I know how difficult it can be to get yourself out of that rut.

So how do you stay motivated all of the time?

Contrary to what most people think, accomplishing big-picture dreams has very little to do with feeling motivated from moment to moment.

And it has even less to do with being good at something from the start.

The majority of people looking for motivation will wait for something, or someone, to come around and motivate them before they can get up and take action to motivate themselves.

The key to motivation is actually in the ACTION itself.

Motivation does not come from a specific location in your brain. It is not a fixed part of your personality.

It's also not an essential tool that we use to make us move.

It is most often a consequence of that movement.

So what happens if I cant get motivated to exercise?

The key to making exercise a sustainable part of everyday life is to find a form of movement that you can begin even when your

motivation is low.

Research shows that doing even small amounts of exercise is better than nothing, and anything more than your usual amount of movement will help boost your willpower (Barton & Pretty, 2010).

Find something that feels easy. Something that brings you joy. Adding in some form of exercise, however moderate, will pay you back in feelings of motivation.

Whenever I feel hesitant about taking action towards a goal, it’s usually because I’m thinking about the big picture, and I feel intimidated by it. Now, thinking big is a good thing when you’re setting goals, but it’s a bad thing when you’re working to achieve those goals.

7 ways to keep moving forward when you don’t feel motivated

A new parent getting out of bed at 3 a.m. to soothe a screaming baby for the fifth night in a row isn’t enthusiastic about it.

The entrepreneur spending their Friday night combing through bank statements and receipts isn’t madly in love with do-it-yourself accounting.

The athlete putting in 5 a.m. workouts doesn’t hate warm blankets and sleep.

But if not motivation, then what helps people do the hard stuff? 

People who consistently do the hard thing have several core ideals and practices in common. Here’s how you can adopt them yourself...

#1: Have a crystal clear vision

The clearer the vision, the easier it is to align your action with that goal when the going gets tough. A deeper reason is the fail-safe that keeps you going when you’ve got nothing else left in your tank.

#2: Regularly look back and review your progress

The ancient,animalistic part of our brain likes, wants and needs to see validation in the process: ensure you take regular points to look back at how far you've come. That may be in the form of pictures or a graph of your results!

#3: Continue to set new, micro goals

Looking at the whole staircase may seem like a mountain to climb! So be sure to set yourself smaller short term targets to aim for along your journey- it will keep you focussed, aligned with the bigger picture and ultimately help you remain motivated.

#4: Recognise your roadblocks

Many people dont see that they're actually the ones getting in their own way when it comes to results; self reflection, personal development and change is often the key to recognising and removing roadblocks on your journey to keep you motivated.

#5: Manage your energy, not your time

Many of us feel demotivated when the pressures of 'time' add up upon us; try focussing instead on energy management rather than time management. Time management relates to organization, planning and things that are more tangible, while Energy management relates to more intangible aspects: the feelings one may experience, the sleep hours that one needs to be fresh or the productive hours within the day.

#6: Invest in coaches/mentors

Mentors offer encouragement and an objective set of eyes, This encouragement can motivate you to keep moving forward despite challenges. A mentor can also identify and express their mentee's strengths to instill confidence in them. Having a strong sense of confidence can make the mentee less likely to give up on their goals.

#7: Prioritise habits over willpower

We often assume that our feelings should drive our behavior.

That if we feel tired or sad or discouraged, we should do tired, sad, and discouraged things. (Of course, expressing and acting on your feelings often does serve a purpose. It’s a release, and it sends a clear message to others.)

But it doesn’t have to be that way. We can recognize and accept those feelings in the same way that we grab a  jacket when we see storm clouds passing over.

Our moment-to-moment feelings don’t have to determine who we are or what we choose to do. Simply knowing this can make it easier to carry on when we don’t feel like it.

Motivation, if anything, is an outcome.

You can’t control motivation. It can’t be directly pursued.

What you can control is the series of factors that underpin motivation.

motivation, waves, emotion, myth

Motivation, like emotions comes in waves- If we rely solely on those waves our results will be as inconsistent as they are.

Instead, if we focus on committed intent we are much more aligned with our vision and values and creating habits to rely on rather than emotion.

Love and Light,

Nikki x