Take 5 This December

The busy season has officially started!  Are you feeling overwhelmed and overtired?  Too much to do, too much to buy, too little time?  This month’s blog post gives you another 5 quick tips to enhance your health and wellbeing without over-burdening your to do list.

1. Take 5 minutes to plan your day’s meals and snacks.  The nutritional quality of your diet will vastly improve by this simple act.  If taking 5 minutes daily for this task seems like too much, carve out a few moments at the beginning of the week to make sure you are well-stocked on breakfast and lunch items.  Envision what you’ll enjoy for dinner while you’re at it.  By planning ahead, you won’t be fumbling at meal time to figure out what to eat. You will be able to anticipate food group gaps and fill-in with nutrient-dense choices like fruits and vegetables.

2. Schedule 5 workouts this month.  Five workouts may not seem like a lot, but it’s five more than zero!  Pull out your planner or smart phone calendar.  Block off 5 time slots to move your body.  You can use this time to go to a spin class at the gym, hike with a friend, or power-walk around your neighborhood.  Exercise is a known stress-reducer and immunity booster.

3. Knock 5 things off your to do list.  If you are anything like me, you have a lofty, lengthy to do list.  Pull out that list and cross 5 things off.   I am positive that there are at least 5 things that don’t need to be completed immediately but their very presence on that list feels like a noose around your neck.  Scratch them off!  Feel better?  Table those items for the New Year (or never, if they’re really not important!)

4. Choose 5 healthy, holiday recipes to try this season.  Chances are you have been invited to potlucks, parties, and cookie exchanges.  These fun social events do not have to be diet disasters.  Check out some of my favorite sites (www.cookinglight.com and www.eatingwell.com) for lighter but just-as-tasty alternatives.  Your lips and hips will thank you!

5. Take 5 deep breaths.  Every time you start to feel anxious and overwhelmed, pause and take 5 deep breaths.  Your mind will sharpen, your shoulders will drop and you will feel ready to tackle the project at hand.

Use these 5 ideas to keep on the path to wellbeing this month.  Remember, perfection is not the goal here, progress is.  Taking time to do even some of these things throughout the month will ensure you are on a healthier track into the New Year.

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