5 Tips for a Successful Healthy Living Journey

This past weekend, I reached my 180 day milestone of my healthy living journey.  During the past 6 months, many people have asked about my secret to success, so I thought I’d share my Top 5 Tips for a Successful Healthy Living Journey.

Incredible Support Network  

My wife and children are the foundation of my network and journey.  They keep me grounded, encourage me to accomplish my goals and, most of all, put up with me and my smelly clothes.  They are the reason I do what I do…they are my everything!  In addition to my family, I have a team of great people who keep me moving.  This includes chiropractors, a massage therapist, physical therapist and nutritionist.  I punish my body day after day, week after week and do not stretch nearly enough.  Without them, I’d probably be in traction.  Finally, it’s important to be around others that share similar passions and goals.  For me, that group is the amazing coaches, captains, staff and participants of Team in Training (TNT).  I couldn’t think of a better group of people in which to spend time!      

Set Realistic Goals and Do It Again

At the beginning of the journey, I set just a couple of short-term, realistic goals.  To stay focused and committed to the journey, I continually re-examine these goals and set others to ensure I’m 1) still going in the right direction and 2) able to adjust goals as appropriate.  While developing these short and long-term goals, I made sure that each of my goals was actionable.  For example, instead of saying I’m going to run a ½ marathon in July, I developed a running schedule that prepared me by race day.  

Nutrition: My Fitness Pal

I track EVERYTHING that I eat in My Fitness Pal.  Yes, this can be cumbersome but it has made me more aware of what I’m putting into my body, the percentages of macronutrients (Carb, Protein and Fat) in my diet, and, most importantly, keeps me honest.  If I think about eating or drinking something that I don’t want to enter into this tool, I’m NOT eating or drinking it.  

Wearable Technology: FitBit

I use the FitBit to track the number of steps I take in a day…my goal is 15,000.  I usually exceed that goal, but on “rest” (non-running) days, I’m lucky if I break 7,500.  My perspective on the FitBit is that it provides feedback on how active I am, or should be.  For example, if my steps are low, I might take the stairs vs. the elevator.   I also have fun with FitBit specific challenges with others on the app as well as at work as part of my company’s healthy challenges.

On-Going Learning

Certainly social media and the internet provide quick and easy access to resources and information, especially when that information is delivered right to your email.  I also subscribe to Runner’s World magazine and have read several books on running.  Learning about your passion will only strengthen your commitment to your journey.

“Success is a journey. Not a destination. The doing is often more important than the outcome.”  Arthur Ashe


The Journey Begins

Ever since I started my “Healthy Living Journey” on March 9th, my friends, family and co-workers have noticed the transformation. Almost daily, I’m asked questions about what I eat, how much I’m exercising, whether or not it’s difficult to keep up, etc… I get, “I didn’t recognize you” and, “I didn’t want to say anything in case it was something bad…”

Although, in my mind, all I did was shed over 50 lbs., buy new clothes (and then have them taken in), eat healthy and exercise, people want to hear about my journey.

Yes, the results are incredible. Yes, the combination of “diet” and exercise is what led to the significant changes. However, those are just activities based on the more challenging and realistic aspects of my transformation: What’s motivating me to make the change? What’s driving me to follow a healthy lifestyle? Why now?

In short, at only forty-four, I knew I was a heart attack or stroke waiting to happen, and worse, I was an incredibly shitty role model for my kids and increasingly difficult to my wife. I was on track to losing absolutely everything and I’m sure I would have if not for turning my life around! So, if that’s not enough to get one in the right mindset and committed to change, I’m not sure what is!

The journey began on March 9th, 2015 and I’ve never felt better…

My goal for this blog is to share my thoughts and experiences of striving to be a better version of myself through a positive mindset, setting challenging yet realistic goals and being inspired by those around me.

Please join me on this journey by following, commenting and sharing your own stories and experiences.