This is a question I hear often from my private nutrition clients: how can I quickly get back on track after I fall off the wagon?
The good news is that there is room for a few 'off' days or weeks or completely falling off the wagon on the healthy living journey. It's a lifestyle, which is very different from "dieting" or only eating perfect, clean foods every day.
But one indulgent meal every now and then is different from a whole weekend of junk which leaves you feeling sluggish, bloated, tired, and grumpy.
Here are a few simple tools to reset your body:
1) Start your morning with lemon water: Squeeze 1/2 a lemon into warm (or cool, but not ice cold) water and drink this before anything else. This is a simple way to boost the alkalinity in your system, support your liver in flushing out toxins, and can help to reset your metabolism for the day.
2) Do a mini reset: Take a 3 day break from gluten, dairy and all added sugars. This will force you to fill up on quality, nutrient dense foods with a combination of fresh veggies, lean proteins, nuts, seeds, a little oatmeal or rice and fresh fruit.
The first few days without sugar can be brutal, but when it's only 3 days- anything is possible. If you can make it 7 days, you'll also help to reset your taste buds to enjoy naturally sweet foods and your cravings will dramatically reduce.
3) Boost your steps: Get back to your normal workout routine, but also focus on adding in a few short walks to boost your overall steps for the day. Walking or other low intensity exercises are one of the best ways to increase metabolism, burn fat (not sugar), and boost overall calorie burn without the stress and raised cortisol that comes from intense or steady state workouts.
4) Don't skimp on sleep: Get to bed early so you can get up early and fit in your exercise and healthy breakfast. Make sure you get 8 hours of sleep- being sleep deprived makes it much harder to avoid the junk food as your appetite-regulating hormones will be suppressed.
5) Stay positive: Perhaps most importantly, don't beat yourself up for the splurge or binge or unusual treats. A step back is a normal part of living healthy- and you don't undo weeks of good with one off day. It's what you do the majority of the time that counts the most!
How do you help yourself get back on track?