Recently, I was intrigued by a post on Instagram. It outlined a program to follow for 75 days to become “a new, better you.”
I wasn’t necessarily looking for a new, better me, but, I was looking for a new, daily, health and fitness routine. Why?
Wait for it . . .
My first grandchild was born this past Saturday! (See what I did there? Sneaking the announcement into this post?)
His name is Adrian Theodore Latty. He was born July 25th at 5:40 am, weighing 8 pounds 6 ounces.
Now I have my “why?” I want to continue to be strong and healthy so I can be active and play with my grandson for many years to come! That’s why I’m compelled to improve my daily health and fitness routine.
When the pandemic hit, my previous routine went out the window.
Did something similar happen to your routine?
Daily routines are important. During stressful times, maintaining structure can help you to feel more in control. Even a basic routine of when you will wake, sleep, work, and eat can help you feel less stressed by adding a sense of predictability to your day.
Having a regular routine can also help you take better care of yourself. That’s what drew me to the post I saw on Instagram. It included a list of health and fitness actions that could be incorporated into a daily routine.
Check it out:
I instantly liked the 75-day challenge aspect. Stick to a health and fitness routine for 75 days and positive changes are bound to happen! So last week I took up this challenge . . .
. . . with a few modifications.
Listen, when it comes to selecting your daily structure, you get to determine what works best for you. And, for me, the phrase “follow this program every day exactly as stated” isn’t exactly optimal for a recovering perfectionist.
Here are some of the adjustments I made to the list. As you read through, consider which health habits you might want to include into your daily routine. Or, perhaps this list will inspire you to create a new 75-day challenge of your own.
- Two 45 minute workouts.
I’m finding that two workouts are more helpful than one. I start the day off feeling accomplished after a 30-minute outdoor run and I ward off boredom in the evening with a 20-minute weight-training session. Notice I made an adjustment to the suggested times. If you haven’t been exercising much, I wouldn’t suggest diving right into training for an hour and a half every day. It wouldn’t likely be sustainable. Choose what works for you based on your current activity level.
- One workout must be outdoors.
This is beneficial because even 20 minutes in nature reduces cortisol levels. Cortisol is known as the “stress hormone” and it can cause you to crave those salty, sugary, high-fat snacks. Working out outside gives you a double bang for your buck – you get exercise and the benefits of reduced cortisol.
- Follow a diet.
You could follow a specific diet. Or, you could select an area of your diet to improve. For this part of the challenge, I’m eliminating white sugar.
- No alcohol or cheat meals.
Did your head just explode? Imagine what changes could occur in your life if you were to eliminate alcohol and cheat meals for 75 days!
On Global News last week, I shared a self-care tool to help you HALT unwanted habits and behaviours. Check out the I strategies suggested in the interview and give this step a try. It’s not about perfection. If you slip up, you can dust yourself off, and try again.
- Drink 1 gallon of water.
This sounds like a lot of water to me so I did what every good researcher does . . . I googled it!
According to Healthline.com, “Given that evidence is lacking and many factors affect individual hydration needs, drinking a gallon (3.8 liters) of water per day is likely arbitrary and unnecessary — unless your body requires that much water for proper hydration.”
I modified this suggestion to 8 cups (64 ounces) of water. If I’m still thirsty, I drink more water.
- Read 10 pages, nonfiction. Audio books do not count.
Personally, I believe this step is a game-changer. As Jim Rohn (1930-2009) said,
“Reading is essential for those who seek to rise above the ordinary. We must not permit anything to stand between us and the book that could change our lives.”
I modified this step to read at least 10 minutes a day rather than 10 pages. Again, you decide what works best for you.
- Take a progress pic.
Taking a daily progress picture could be pretty cool by the end of the 75 days. A weekly, monthly, or “before and after” picture would also help you to see your progress.
While there are certainly a number of things happening in the world which are beyond our control, there are still many things within our control – like choosing a routine with health, wellness, and success, habits.
I invite you to make a commitment to follow a 75-day challenge of your own. For accountability, write down your start date and end date. My start date was July 20, 2020 and the end date is October 3, 2020. Only a week in and I already feel stronger, more focused, and I’m sleeping better than I’ve slept in years.
Maybe you’re thinking, “What if I can’t do it?”
Yes, but what if you can?
All my best,