I mentioned before that I’m not much of a resolutions kinda girl. I have the willpower of a gnat and add in the factor of being told – if only by myself – that I can’t do something? 9 times out of 10, girl’s gonna do it… Now, health and fitness is a bit of a grey area for me. I like healthy food and I also have coeliac disease meaning that “normal” bread, cakes etc. are off the menu. However, their gluten free (pumped full of chemicals) counterparts which I do often indulge in at breakfast/lunch/afternoon tea meetings, are even worse for you. So there’s swings and roundabouts there. I mean, also add in the fact that I love takeaways/eating out/all the sweet stuff/all the savoury stuff and generally just all the food and you’ve got a girl that on the whole, probably gets her 5 fruit and veg in a day but definitely also gets her 5x the amount of fat/sugar/carbs etc. in, in a day too.
Exercise. I mean, I’m an extra fries kinda girl – genuine fact: my fiance and I ate frozen chips serving 12 people between us last weekend, no lie – and with my recently diagnosed fibromyalgia (which is 99.9% terrible news with the 0.1% being the fact that I can do no exercise and not feel too guilty about it) – exercise is pretty much non-existent in my life.
But despite not being into resolutions, and despite having a huge appetite for food and netflix in bed kinda days… I’ve realised – finally, at the grand old age of 23 – that I might find it great fun being an overeating sloth, but my body probably
thinks I’m an absolute knob hates me for it, and seeing as life is so short/we only have one/[insert your own choice of favourite cheesy life quote here] I’ve finally made the decision to look after myself more. Not to overhaul my life and be the next “no dairy/no gluten/no sugar/no flavour/no life” guru, but just to use the new year to become a new better me and I’ve managed to do this with just a few simple steps that I really hope help you as much as they have me.
The Fitbit. Never in my life did I think I’d own, use and actually love a fitbit but after trialling the Fitbit Charge HR I realised that it’s benefitted me and my fitness – which still feels so bloomin’ weird to say – in more than just one way. The Charge HR (heart rate) version of the Fitbit focuses on the heart rate making it easier to track calorie burn, maintain exercise intensity and maximise your training regime. What I absolutely love about it is that it just does so much and yet is a pretty neat little thing. It’s so comfortable that I actually forget I’m even wearing it and isn’t too large to stand out/look unsightly.
So, looks over, what does the Fitbit do exactly and how/has it actually helped me? So it records pretty much everything. From your heart rate, to calories burned, to floors climbed and active minutes, it really does give such an insight into how active (or in my case, inactive) you really are and I think this in itself, is motivation enough to make a change. Before I even saw my results, I immediately wanted to do more (and then I saw my results and knew that I had to more). In short, over the space of the last two weeks I’ve increased my steps dramatically – oh hello walks around the park with 1D blaring in my ear holes – started using the stairs more often rather than the lift – do I have Beyonce’s butt yet? – and tried to limit the amount of time just sat totally still at my laptop and I have to say that in general, whilst it hasn’t quite been long enough to feel an improvement in my fitness, I feel so much happier and better in myself knowing that I’m doing (even just a little) more and trying to make a change. Small steps people, small steps…
The Fitbit Charge HR also records your sleep which I think is incredible. Again, to be totally honest, as a long term insomniac I already know that I don’t sleep much (subtle way of saying I basically don’t sleep at all #EdwardCullenNextDoor) however if you do sleep “normally” but can’t tell if you’re getting enough sleep, this would be so perfect!
You can track all of the data the fitbit records online but they also have an app which I have to say, is incredible! It’s so quick and easy to set up and you can literally see your records in seconds. I’m not saying it’s turned me into Mo Farah – although I do run pretty quickly when the takeaway guy knocks at the door – but it has made me make so much more of an effort to move and eventually, get fit!
Now the exercise side is over – [insert hands up/hallelujah emoji here] – it’s time for nutrition. Now, as I mentioned above, I am definitely not turning into a holier than holy superfood robot, but I know that changes need to be made and one of my favourite ways of doing this has been switching my afternoon peanut butter/gf cake/chocolate/[insert your own form of calorific artery clogging food here] for a healthy smoothie courtesy of the Nutribullet – and any leftover fruit/veg/peanut butter (soz, had to leave it in somewhere) that I can find. I’m sure you’ve all heard of the Nutribullet before and that’s for good reason. Considering how small it is, this bad boy blends everything in a matter of seconds meaning that smoothies, nut butters, soups, cakes mixtures (you get the gist, anything) is super quick and easy.
Today I opted for a Spinach, Blueberry, banana, yogurt and Coconut Milk smoothie and I promise it tasted better than the swamp water looking concoction that it turned out like [insert cry laughter emoji here].
Finally, and personally for me I think most importantly, looking after yourself mentally. It’s not the first time that I’ve mentioned that my work-life balance is totally, well… unbalanced. I’m forever being told by family and friends that I work too much and never take time off and that’s definitely something that I’m attempting to change this year. Whether it’s just an hour or so in the evening to watch your favourite series – Oh hello
Harvey Spector Suits – or read a magazine. To have a nice long bath or just chill with friends… I personally think I’m much more productive when I’m less stressed anyway so here’s to a more chilled out, less overworked Elle in 2016*
*i.e more Netflix and Chill sundays #WinningInLife
And that brings me to the end of this post. I know it may seem a little daunting – and very unlike me – but I really feel like to actually get started with this health thing it’s best to just hit it from all angles, which is exactly what I’m attempting to do.
I’d love to know if you have any fitness tips, posts or favourite video’s to watch? Or just some inspiration, because girlfriend needs all the help she can get! 😉