wellness life hacks yoga

Why Wellness Life Hacks?

If you’ve been hanging around ButeauFull Chaos for long you’ll know that I”ve made a transition from posting lots of comfort foods and sweet treats to healthier alternatives. You might also know that these changes weren’t just blog specific, but applied to my entire lifestyle.

A little less than six months ago I had a wakeup call. Heart issues, extreme obesity and the desire to see my children, and grandchildren, grow up all combined into one, “Oh my gosh, I’m killing myself a little each day!” moment. Fast forward to today and I’ve lost 75 pounds, I’m working out regularly and I’ve even got a few nearby peaks under my belt (my feet?).

I’ve got more energy, more drive, more … well, life inside me than I have ever had before! A lot of that was hard work but much of it was the result of some rather simple changes that anyone can do right now! One of the first things I did was give up excuses. No. More. Excuses.

My Wellness Life Hacks

Drink! Drink like a fish! I mean it! I’m certain there is nothing healthy about drinking Diet Coke around the clock, right? I used to think well, it is diet soda – at least I’m not drinking all that sugar. So what. Seriously – I can’t even understand how my body functioned under the influence of straight soda (12 cans a day1) with the occasional iced coffee. I don’t know exactly how much water I drink now but I’ve pretty much stopped counting after the third or fourth refill of my 32 oz water bottle in the early afternoon. Water nourishes my soul. I actually crave it now.

Eat! Eat more of the good stuff! If it comes in a box, contemplate. How many of the ingredients can you pronounce? Eating real, whole foods that aren’t stuffed with crazy ingredients, preservatives and all kinds of other junk and fillers is key. My husband and I used to eat sweets every night in bed while watching TV. It was just something we did together after the hustle and the bustle of the day died down. It was our reward. Now, I reward myself with something that is truly healthy for me, for my body and ultimately for my family. By giving up the junk and replacing it with whole, fresh foods, I stopped this cycle of craving junk (and lots of it!) when my body realized that I didn’t really want that stuff. I was stuffing my face but I was starving my body!

Try starting small if it is too much to do all at once. Swap out that candy bar for a sweet piece of fruit. Try some lightly salted almonds in place of potato chips to satisfy that salt craving. Consider swapping some dairy or meat protein with soy protein and enjoy a refreshing glass of Silk Soy Milk. You can learn more about the benefits of soy milk here. I stick to a lower carb type food plan and can’t go a day without my unsweetened Silk Almond Milk.

Breathe! Sometimes we just have to remember to breathe. Good air in, bad stuff out. I literally taught myself how to breathe all over again. Whether I’m stressed, working out, doing Yoga or hiking a mountain, breathing has been key for me. I start every yoga session with my hands on my belly to remind myself to let my stomach fill with air as I breathe in and contract as I breathe out. We forget to breathe this way over time. You’ll notice a baby breathing this way. But, take a second right now – when you breathe in does your stomach expand or contract? It sounds silly, but it makes a difference!

Live! Are you really, truly living? Alive? Or are you stuck in that day to day cycle of life, parenting, just making it to bed time? Live each and every single day with purpose. But, more importantly live for YOU! We’ve all heard the flight attendants’ famous speech about putting on your own oxygen mask first so that you can help others. This is real life advice we all need to take. The biggest gift I gave myself was an hour a day. An hour to drink some coffee, read and workout. I owe myself and hour a day for me – and so do you! I used to think I was too busy to workout, too busy to even get a shower in some days. But now, I just simply make that time happen. Maybe I get up earlier, go to bed a little later. Maybe I have my husband pitch in a little extra or ask the kids to do an extra five minutes of chores each. Sometimes, I’m even a little behind schedule but I stick to giving myself that hour to live and everyone’s lives around me are better for it.

What are your wellness life hacks?

This conversation is sponsored by Silk. The opinions and text are all mine.