Welcome to New Year Better You Boot Camp! 

Here we are at Week 4! How did that happen, right?! Keep up your great work and remember that every day is a new day to start again.

Don't forget to check-in by dropping me an email or schedule one of your coaching sessions and we'll talk about what you're thinking now after 3 weeks together :)

In the meantime, here are your next set of challenges. Let me know if you have any questions. Have a a great day!

Laurie

 
 

Challenge #1: Eat 1 serving of beans per day.

Beans are one of the most common denominators in the blue zones, the areas in the world where people live the longest and healthiest.  

Beans are low in sugar, high in fiber, high in protein and have a low glycemic index. And, they're packed with antioxidants and are inexpensive. Because beans are packed with soluble fiber they also help to lower our LDL ("bad") cholesterol and triglycerides too. Beans also help to lower our risk of Type 2 diabetes, reduce our cancer risk and our risk of heart disease. Pretty great, right?

There are lots of options. Black, red, pinto, kidney, cannellini, garbanzo (chick peas), lentils, peas, and soybeans are all different varieties. Though the soybean is the only bean with a complete protein, if you eat a grain during the day and have some of the other varieties of beans, this should supply your body with all of the ingredients to make a complete protein. 

Beans can be consumed in any form. Hummus, added to salads, soups, and veggie burgers are just a few ideas. If you're a little worried about some of the less awesome side effects of eating too many beans, try mashing the beans to reduce the effects. Or, you could try Bean-O which contains enzymes to break down the bean. On the plus side, as you increase your bean intake, your body will increase the production of enzymes to digest the beans. 

Bonus Challenge: Go meatless at least one day this week and swap in beans. You'll help your body and the environment.

Need some recipes? Here's a delicious Black Bean Salsa, an easy Panzanella Salad with White Beans, or a hearty Winter Minestrone Soup. Or, get ready for the Superbowl with a Vegetarian Black Bean Chili or a dairy free Chicken Casserole.


ThinkstockPhotos-186538982.jpg

Declutter Your Mind with a Daily Declutter!

Challenge #2: Do a 10 minute daily declutter.

 We all have it. Piles, clutter or just general disorganization in our homes. What we may not realize though is that clutter, piles or just having that "I need to clean" feeling raises our stress levels. If we walk in the door each night to find a pile of shoes, our stress level increases. If we go to bed each night with a pile of books or magazines next to our bed, our brain registers this as items it needs to deal with and our stress levels rise. This is definitely not what we want right before we try to go to sleep. By reducing clutter, we can actually reduce our stress and increase our well-being.

We also may not realize how we can change our cravings by changing our environment. After all, we eat what we see. By replacing our candy bowls with a fruit bowl, we're more likely to snack on fruit. By cleaning out our fridge and moving the healthy choices to the front and the not so great choices to the back, we can influence our cravings. We're also more likely to cook a healthy meal at home when we have a clean and organized fridge. When it's a mess, we often shut the door and call for a pizza. 

I know that tackling all of the above may feel overwhelming. So, we're setting time limits. You'll set your timer for 10 and go. Don't get distracted. Don't stop to read articles. Just keep going. When the timer dings, you're done. You'll love the progress you make in such a short period of time. 

When you're struggling over whether to keep, toss or giveaway, remember the question that master organizer Marie Kondo says to ask yourself, "Does it tokimeku?" In other words, does it spark joy? If not, she says to be grateful for the joy it gave you or another person at one time and then let it go. 

You can choose your own places in your home to declutter or you can follow this sample Weekly De-Clutter Challenge:

You can choose your own places in your home to declutter or you can follow this sample Weekly De-Clutter Challenge:

Supplies needed: Paper Towels, Spray Cleaner, Garbage Bags

  • Sunday: Clean Out Your Fridge.
  • Monday: General Pick-Up around Your Home
  • Tuesday: Declutter that Bedside Table

Remember, set the timer for 10 minutes. When the timer dings, you're done! You've got this!

 

 

  • Wednesday: Clean Up Your Desk
  • Thursday: Choose a Pile
  • Friday:  Bathroom Clean
  • Saturday: Choose a closet or your kitchen. Create 3 piles: Toss, Giveaway and Keep.

20170914_102954.jpg

Challenge #3: Pick 3 to Boost Joy each Day

We've been working throughout our program to boost our activity, nutrition, sleep, gratitude and organization. Today, we're going one step further and putting it all together. Pick 3 areas that are most meaningful to you where you are right now. In other words, because we are different each day, choose well-being and joy boosters that you need each day. 

For instance, typically, the 30 - 45 minutes of activity makes everyone feel great. So this may be a non-negotiable source of joy in your day. Perhaps, sleep was another essential ingredient. Each day this week, you'll choose from the list below. 

If you liked Week 3's workouts, here they are again as well as our 5 minute challenge.

Pick at least 3 of these 5 Joy and Well-Being Boosters!

1. Take a Gratitude Break:

Name 5 things that you're grateful each day. By taking a moment each day to focus on what we're grateful for in our lives, we instantly increase our mood and our well-being. If you're ever feeling down, this is a quick and easy way to pull yourself out of it quick. If you're having trouble sleeping, this is also a good exercise to do before you go to sleep or if you wake up in the middle of the night. 

2. Be Social, Have Fun:  Spend some time with people who you are happy being around. 

This could be your partner, a friend, a group you volunteer with or, basically, anyone that you feel better having spent some time with in life. Human beings are social creatures. By being around others, we reduce our stress and boost our well-being. Even better, grab a workout with a friend.

3. Sleep.

Think of a toddler when they're tired, joy may not be the word you use to describe them when they're melting down from fatigue. In many ways, adults are much different . We just hide our fatigue a bit better. Remember back to our sleep challenge, sleep is one of the most important things we can do for our minds and bodies.

4. Get active! Do something active for at least 30 minutes. 

Being physically active reduces our stress, boosts our heart health and is like giving your brain Miracle Grow! Keep up with your 30 - 45 minute workouts, go dancing, play with your kids or just get out and go for a walk. 

5. Meditate.

We not only immediately feel calmer and lower our blood pressure with meditation but our brains are healthier because of it too. You can try a meditation, a mantra or a prayer. Whatever your style, give it a shot. Here is a 5 minute meditation to get you started. Or, you click on the 10 minute daily stretch and meditation video with me. 

Remember each day you'll choose at least 3 to boost your joy and well-being.

 

Good luck with your 3 Challenges! Don't forget to check them off on your tracker.

I'll see you on Monday!

All material provided here is for informational or educational purposes only. Please consult your physician regarding the applicability of any opinions or recommendations with respect to your symptoms or medical condition. Use or reproduction of text or photographs is prohibited without written permission from WellStyles Consulting®.