#20 of 180 WAYS 2013 IS DIFFERENT!

20. Instead of focusing on the negativity of Mondays and the beginning of a new work week, turn it into something positive with a Makeover Monday plan of action. I was reading the current issue of Real Simple magazine over the weekend, especially the article “Feel Better Already” by Sara Reistad-Long. The tagline caught my attention first: “So maybe you can’t change your health overnight. But you can get a head start, with these 21 painless, proven ways to instantly boost your well-being (inside and out)”. There’s lots of great info in it if you get your hands on a copy. It got me thinking about how each week I could pick some new thing I want to add into my routine to keep making my life healthier, instead of always picking one date (such as the New Year) to start this whole brand new lifestyle packed with all kinds of changes. Usually, I miss THAT mark by more than a mile in due time. So every Monday I am going to try to implement a small change, on the day that is notoriously easy to be in a bad mood about and really reflect all week long on how I am able to stay with it. After that week of conscious repetition, will that make it easier to just make it routine as I head into the next week? For example, the article points out in #12-“Create an ‘electronic sundown'” that the short wavelengths of light emitted by electronics can help suppress melatonin, so it’s not the best idea to spend your time in bed before sleeping reading on your tablet. Considering my husband is both plugged into his ipad every single night and requires a supplemental melatonin tablet before he can actually get some zzzs, this would be a great small step he can take to work on getting better sleep. (Cue the whining next to me in bed.) I related to #8-“Get some ‘microexercise'” in a major way. Though I am spending more time at the gym consistently getting in those main workouts, I am still sedentary most of the day. And the article cites studies showing that short bouts of exercise of just 1-10 minutes throughout everyday activities can get the same benefits of regular workouts. So I resolved this morning to stop every hour at my desk working and literally just march in place for 2 minutes. And so far, so good. I even used it as a time to step outside in the fresh Oregon air in my backyard and get some of that elusive Oregon sun at the same time. I just marched my way over there, let my dogs stretch and run around outdoors too, and marched my way back to my office a couple minutes later. It’s just one way I am also trying to accomplish my overall goal of getting to 10,000 steps a day in general. One step (or march) at a time!

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