By Katie Bennett, Contributing Writer
I wouldn’t consider myself a health-nut, and I don’t often blog about healthy living. I’m just an average American housewife and mom, trying to find the balance of healthfulness, simplicity and practicality.
However, there are some simple changes I’ve made to keep our lives a bit fresher and healthier. So if you’re anything like me, you may appreciate these truly doable and simple baby steps to a healthier life.
4 Baby Steps to a Healthier Life
1. Win the food battle at the grocery store.
If I buy chips, ice cream, fruit snacks and crackers at the grocery store, what am I going to be feeding my kids and myself all week but those very things? Processed, fatty foods are all-to-convenient. Our bodies will crave these things over real food.
However, if at the grocery store I buy fruits, whole-grain crackers or breads, fresh meats, cheeses, vegetables, then that’s exactly what my family will eat. When the most tempting items aren’t available, hunger will drive me to this next tier of healthy food, and everyone will be better off in the long run.
2. Give yourself a bedtime.
When I leave this open ended, I stay up too late doing pointless things like browsing the web or watching TV. For most of us, kids and jobs don’t wait to accommodate this lack of self-discipline, and no matter what, we can’t get back the time we waste. The result is we live our lives tiredly and/or unproductively. Giving myself a bedtime and bedtime routine has gone a long way in both helping me to sleep better and to feel more rested and energized during the day.
Your kids should have a bedtime too. While I’m not a total stickler for this (my kids aren’t yet in school), research shows that their little bodies will do better when they have sleeping routines and plenty of rest.
For more of my thoughts on this HERE.
3. Wear athletic shoes more.
I did say baby steps, right? This may sound silly, but I’ve found myself truly more motivated to be active, either going for a walk, running errands or simply bouncing around the house doing chores, when my feet are properly supported and “springy.”
I never considered athletic shoes my style, but since discovering what a difference this made in my exercise level and housekeeping motivation, I have been loving wearing them around the house daily.
4. Meal plan.
When I don’t have a plan, I’m much more likely to resort to eating out (probably fast food since we’re on a budget) or perhaps a frozen pizza. When I take the time at the beginning of the week to think about our schedule and strategize our busy nights, my family simply eats much better.
This also helps me to be intentional at the grocery store. When I’m buying food for specific meals, I tend to buy healthier.
If you want to get more organized with meal planning, you might try a meal planning site such as Plan to Eat, my favorite meal planning service.