This is a guest blog post from Michelle Cartmel, health and wellness coach for Highway to Health. If you’re not registered for the program, register for free for the Highway to Health Wrap Up!
Hey Guys and Gals –
We are in WEEK 3 of Highway to Health and I’m SO FIRED UP that you are here because it shows me that you are committed to improving your health. The first few weeks of this program laid the foundation that you need to get to Week 3 which is themed Map Your Route. This week I’m taking you to a place….ok maybe it’s a head space…where you will be encouraged to THINK BEFORE YOU EAT. That’s right, we’re going to put you into the practice of mindful eating or mapping your (food) route, something that everyone should do no matter your line of work.
Think of it like this: when you pick up a load of freight, you plug the destination into your GPS, right? You probably couldn’t get to where you’re going without it. Well, I want you to think of your diet in the same way on a daily basis. When you program your internal GPS with a smart food route, you arrive at Destination Health, where you feel lighter on your feet, have loads of energy and you’re motivated to continue to make smart choices. Alternatively, when you don’t program your internal GPS, your diet tends to go off the rails. Why? Because you’re making spontaneous decisions about what to eat when you’re probably already starving. You don’t have time to think about what you are eating, you just need to grab something fast and get back on the road. After eating that _(fill in blank with name of naughty food)_ the place that you land is Destination In the Dumps.
Getting to Destination Health is easy, you just need to remember to plug in the coordinates every morning. When you start doing this each day, I promise you’re going to reach this sublime place soon and start feeling great.
DIRECTIONS FOR PROGRAMMING YOUR INTERNAL GPS:
- Start at the Grocery Store. One – two days before your next ride, head to the grocery store and fill your cart with goodness for your ride. Fruits and veggies, healthy pre-made foods you can microwave in your cab, chicken breasts that you can pre-grill and pop in your cooler.
- Make a Visual or Mental Roadmap. On the morning up your ride, wake up and look at your route for the day, and decide which foods you’re going to prepare at home and where you might stop to eat on each day of your drive. My suggestion is to write this out, but if you are super disciplined, create a mental map and follow it.
- Look for Calorie Counts on Menus. When you stop for a meal, see if the menu has calorie counts, and if so, choose wisely! If not, choose foods that fuel you: lean meats, veggies and greens, smart carbs like brown rice or whole wheat bread. Reminder: make the veggies/greens the stars of your meal
- Prepare for Snack Attacks! You know when they come on, so be prepared with healthy snacks. Fruit, nuts, seeds, unsalted popcorn, veggies and hummus, string cheese. (Here is a great list of go-to’s that you can keep in your cab). NOTE: if you’re not hungry, DO NOT SNACK!
- Arrive at Destination Health. You’ve finished your ride and you’ve done everything right. Pat yourself on the back and savor the reward of feeling good about yourself inside and out. Now repeat this on your next ride…and the next one…and the one after that…!
- Bonus Mileage. If you want to be reach Destination Health even faster, you must apply this practice to your weekends too!
Like anything else, Mapping Your Route is something that becomes routine. Routine translates into long-term, positive results. So let’s get started…decide where you are going and stay on path. I promise you are going to LOVE Destination Health.
Cheers to your Health, Michelle