The beginning to any food journey is your mentality! If you believe you can do it, you will! It's not easy, I'm not here to tell you that it's easy or there's a quick fix. But you can do it! First, you need to convince yourself that you are strong and capable.
Then set a goal! The goal has to be specific and it can change at any time. Actual events (3+ months away) are a great marker, birthdays, or just a time length. Having a goal to work toward, that's not about your weight or body, will relieve the pressure. I gave myself the first goal of losing the college weight, what that meant specifically I did not know! Because before college I was 18 and your body is completely different from 18 to 22.
The journey gets tough, healthy living isn't 100% perfect and don't expect too much from yourself. It's a lifestyle, not a diet.
The first step in any health life style is choosing the right fuel for your body. What you put into your body is the number one thing that is going to affect how you feel and how you look.
TIP: Grocery shopping is key! Only bring into your space what your body loves.
Whether you have your own kitchen or live in a dorm you can do it, I promise! Don't bring into your space what you don't want to consume because that's just torture and you don't deserve that. Find what works for you. If you have food allergies, don't eat those food items! Your body will thank you for it. If you have food sensitivities, don't eat it or limit your exposure to it, your body will thank you for it. Well balanced diets are what will fuel your body. Complex carbs, protein, probiotics, etc. Pinterest is your best friend for healthy recipes including any food product available.
TIP: Healthy food doesn't have to be gross. Find recipes that you actually like eating.
Life is short! Don't ignore your cravings! Eat Dove dark chocolate squares if you want chocolate. If you restrict yourself too much, it'll all explode and you'll end up on an eating binge. Eat pizza if you want, just have a slice or two instead of a whole pie and get plain cheese. Eat the cake at a birthday party, but have one piece.
Extensive cardio is not the key to losing weight. In fact, muscle burns more fat! If lifting works for you, great! There are endless tutorials on Youtube, Pinterest and Instagram. Don't just run on the treadmill, mix it up. The stair master is great for building leg muscle, but don't exclude your arms! If the gym isn't your gig, and trust me it wasn't mine, try classes. Yoga, pilates, spin, bare - the list can go on and on.
TIP: Get a fitness tracker, use your phone app to track your exercise. This way you get the gratification, something telling you you're doing great and a way to look back on your progress.
I started with yoga because it was familiar to me - I found a studio, got a pass and started going. And you know what, it was fun! Within 21 days, the habit started to form - Going to the same classes every week and seeing the same people. I've been going at least twice a week for 8 months now. Slowly, I started to go to the gym and try out different exercises with weights and machines. After a few months, that wasn't my thing anymore, so I switched it up and tried spin. Spin is my newest obsession so excuse my excitement, but i just showed up to a class alone, never having done it before and gave it my best... and it was HARD! But the instructor kept talking about being the best you, pushing yourself and owing yourself everything you've got. And now, I do spin 3x a week and yoga 2x a week and my body is literally transforming before my eyes.
It's a lifestyle, not a quick fix. It's hard, but not impossible. Your body is the only one you get, so treat it like a temple.