#CalmTip: Make Your Health a Priority

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

Because this week, May 8th -14th is National Women’s Health Week, this week’s calm tip is to make your health a priority. By doing this, you will not only feel better physically, you’ll also feel better mentally and emotionally since you’ll be reducing stress and becoming happier. So, if you’re ready to do better when it comes to your health, here are five ways to begin:

1. Determine your “why” (and it needs to be a good one). Before I had Nailah, I ate really horribly and didn’t exercise consistently. I’ve always been small, so while I knew working out and eating well was still important for me, it wasn’t much of a priority. But when I was pregnant and was thinking about how I wanted raise my child, I realized that I didn’t want her to grow up eating a lot of frozen, processed, and fast food. I also knew that if I wanted her to eat well and be as healthy as possible, had to change because she would learn from me. My main “why” for making my health a priority was my daughter and being a good example to her. Yours might be the same, or it might be that you want to be around for your family as long as possible, or you want to look/feel as good as possible. Having a compelling why will help you stay focused and motivated on your goal of better health.

2. Start small with exercise. When I began working out consistently in 2014, I started at home with Blogilates. The creator, Cassey Ho, offers a calendar for beginners, which is what I did. Then I moved on to her more advanced videos and calendars and added in yoga and some other YouTube Channels. Now, I do yoga almost daily and go to the gym twice a week. If you’re not used to working out, you can begin at home with YouTube, walk around your neighborhood two to three days a week, or try different classes at a local YMCA, gym, or recreation center to see what you like (side note: To stick with your exercise routine, you have to enjoy what you’re doing). For home workouts, check out Blogilates, FitnessBlender, and HangTightWMarC.

3. Start small with eating better. Like I mentioned earlier, I used to eat really horribly. Yes, even though I was married (my husband, Chris, knew I didn’t like cooking). In the beginning, we ate out a lot and basically like we were still in college (don’t judge me). But, as I said, I realized I didn’t want Nailah to grow up eating those kinds of foods (plus, I was also trying to get back into shape), so I knew I had to make a change. I started small by replacing ground beef with ground turkey, grilling chicken instead of frying out, cutting out soda, and eating more veggies. And those are some ways you can start small, too.

4. Know it’s a lifestyle change. If you look on social media, especially around this time of year, you’ll see a lot of memes about getting that “summer body.” Yeah, you can choose to diet and exercise for some amount of time to reach a goal (which is totally fine),but if you want to be healthy for a lifetime, your changes have to become a part of your daily life.

5. Define what healthy means for you. Again, on social media, you’ll see people telling you should eat this, do that workout, try this tea or waist trainer to look like this, “body goals,” etc. But as my friend Ivy Felicia says,”healthy is an outfit that looks different on everybody.” In other words, figure out what healthy looks like for YOU, then do what you need to do.

“It’s never too early or too late to work towards being the healthiest you.” – Her Campus

How will you start to make your health a priority? Let me know by leaving a comment! 

 

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