At the end of the day, we are all creatures of habit! We rely on the habits we build to get us through the day and maintain consistency be it preparing your breakfast the night before or doing your skincare routine every morning. But we only get there by building small habits and even on the nights you’re too tired to move, that skin care routine still gets done. And that’s why creating microhabits is a great tool to transform habits into positive daily outcomes.
Microhabits are essentially small yet meaningful actions that you can do each day to achieve long-term results! So, take for example you wish to be able to run 10km and do so 5 times/week, for someone who does not run much (or even someone who does) that is a lot! Most people go all in (and yes this can work for some), but this may result in you losing interest and setting yourself up for failure. Therefore, instead of going out and trying to run 10km in one go why not focus on small things like:
- Getting into your running gear as soon as you get home/wake up
- Running 1-2km each day and building over time
- Focus on running 1-2 days per week rather than 4-5days
Because when we set out a larger goal and we don’t succeed or complete the intended goal we can become frustrated and annoyed with ourselves. Whereas if you set out small habits/goals you feel as though you are progressing and this can feel rewarding. When we can’t see or feel change, we tend to stop chasing the intended goal!
So, by using microhabits you will enable positive and lasting change in your life from health and well-being to hobbies and relationships!
Nutrition fact of the week
Stress can have an effect on our appetite due to changes in hunger signals. It is suggested 40% of people tend to eat more while stressed while 40% tend to eat less. Leptin is our hormone that tells us when we are full while ghrelin is the hormone that tells us we’re hungry! Foods that are high in sugar, fat and salt can activate the brain’s reward system and therefore we turn to them when we are stressed! When we’re stressed, we can then end up sleeping less and thus:
- Increase appetite
- Increase ghrelin and decrease leptin
- Cause irregular eating habits
- Associated with higher calorie intake
So, during stressful times try to bring it back to basics and focus on eating regularly (not restricting yourself), including nutrients through fruit, vegetables, smoothies, and juices. Also, try to find other ways of dealing with stress i.e. walks, talking with friends/family, watching favourite shows – while identifying triggers that are causing this stress!
Nutrition tip of the week
Do you suffer from bloating? This means that your stomach has become inflated. And for some, this can be a regular occurrence. So, some common factors that can bring about bloating are eating large volumes of food or when you’re highly stressed, also things like smoking, chewing gum and even using straws can all contribute. To reduce feelings of regular bloating here are some helpful tips:
- Eat slowly and mindfully
- Maintain regular exercise
- Remove foods you know can bring on discomfort i.e. flatulence, burping
If issues continue and it is starting to affect you daily then it may be worth considering getting in contact with a professional, just to be sure!
See last week’s blog on Meal Prepping!
This week’s simple swaps
Curry in a hurry
Time: 15 minutes / Difficulty: easy / Serves: 2 servings / Nutritional values – 200kcal / fat 7g / protein 23g / carbs 11g / *not including rice and naan bread
Ingredients: 1 tbsp oil / 1 onion diced / 1 clove garlic / 1 tbsp ginger / 1tsp chilli / half a can chopped tomatoes / 200g chicken breast / 100g frozen peas / 2 tsp garam masala / 3 tbsp yoghurt
- Fry the onion in a pan, followed by garlic, ginger and chilli
- Add the chicken and fry until cooked through
- Add tomatoes and peas, (add more water if needed), and bring to a boil
- Stir in yoghurt
- Serve with rice, naan, lime wedge, and salt and pepper
Time: 10 minutes / Difficulty: easy / Serves: 1 serving / Nutritional values – 480kcal / fat 13g / protein 27g / carbs 63g
Ingredients: 2 large bananas / 20g nut butter / half scoop protein / 250ml milk
- Combine ingredients in a blender
- Perfect for a post-training/workout!