(Family Features) If the decadent dishes and busy schedules of the holiday season have set back your efforts towards a healthy lifestyle, fear not. With the right plan in place, it's easy to get back on track, re-energized and refocused for the year ahead.
Shorter days and colder weather may seem to heighten the desire to indulge in comfort foods, just as much as it can lessen the motivation to take part in physical activity, like hitting the gym or taking an afternoon stroll.
Health expert, author and registered dietitian, Patricia Bannan, shares a few simple changes to help re-charge your routine and get excited, no matter what the thermometer reads outside:
Set realistic expectations
If you haven't been running in months and plan to jump on the treadmill tomorrow, it's important to take your new workout in stride. Having high aspirations for your health is a wonderful thing, but there's nothing wrong with starting small. Setting achievable goals - such as jogging or walking for a certain amount of time each day - will help to keep you working toward the goal of running a10K in the long term.
By now you've likely commiserated with friends about the lapse in your health and wellness goals. This is the perfect opportunity to ask someone to partner up in your healthy pursuits. Ask friends, family, neighbors or co-workers if they are interested in joining a gym, taking a boot camp class, or participating in a healthy cooking course.
Supply your body with quality nutrition
Beyond getting in your required fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, healthy fats and whole grains through a balanced diet, taking a high quality supplement can help bridge any nutrient gaps and help you get what your body may be lacking. Bannan recommends Adult Gummies Energy‡ B12 from Nature Made(r), the #1 pharmacist recommended brand of letter vitamins.1 Vitamin B12 supports cellular energy production by helping the body convert food into energy, and gummies offer an enjoyable way to take your vitamins.†
Swap out ingredients
Healthier alternatives exist for all of your favorite dishes. If you crave a hearty bowl of chili, switch out ground beef for a leaner variety of ground turkey. Use whole-grain pasta in your favorite Italian dishes or whole-grain breads for sandwiches. These changes are small, but can have a big impact on your overall nutrition when put into practice.
By incorporating a few of these simple tips into your daily wellness routine, you'll be on the path to a healthier new you. For more information, visit www.naturemade.com.
1 Based on US News & World Report - Pharmacy Times Survey
‡Vitamin B12 supports cellular energy production in the body.†
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Source: Nature Made