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Body Positivity / Inspired Living / Lifestyle / Wellness

10 Ways to Stay Motivated to Eat Healthy

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If you are reading this chances are you might be struggling with motivated to eat healthy. I get it, we are a year into a pandemic where pants and bras have been optional with lockdown’s and everything being online. It’s easy to fall into a funk or hit up your fridge more often than you would like working from home or not having anything to look forward to.

Whatever it is you are struggling with, this article will guide you through ten ways you can get motivated and inspired to start eating healthier in a way that works for you. The ideas is that you are creating a lifestyle not a quick fix.
  1. Start by setting small, attainable goals for yourself.

Start with one thing that you are struggling the most with or would like to change first. It could be packing or prepping healthy lunches, or snacks. One issue that I see a lot with clients is prepping ahead for healthier evening snacks. It can be easier to eat well during the day and then snack all that progress away at nighttime, being prepared helps so much.

Write out your goals and get excited and inspired to put them into action.

AIM FOR CONSISTENCY OVER PERFECTION.

You don’t have to set these massive goals that can seem daunting or unattainable, start small and be consistent.

  1. Plan ahead.

It doesn’t sound sexy but it does ensure that you are prepared, which makes it so much easier to stick with healthy eating.

Plan out meals and snacks. Create your shopping list (you can even order from home online to save time and do grocery pick up).

Schedule in time to cook so meals are ready to go. If you have busy days plan simple meals or ones that can be prepped ahead like black bean burgers or spinach and feta turkey burgers.

This is what my typical week looks like:

Breakfast – smoothies, oatmeal bowls, protein pancakes, fritattas

Lunch – soups (prep one batch for lunches each Sunday), bowls, salads, leftovers

Dinner – Stir-fry’s, casseroles, stuffed squash, winter bowls, sweet potato pizza, healthy burgers and all things Curry.

Snacks – Chia seed crackers, crisps, homemade balls, bars, cups, nuts, seeds, fruit, veggies and hummus.

MAKE COOKING FUN SO YOU ACTUALLY WANT TO DO IT.

Grab your favourite apron, put on some tunes or listen to your favourite podcast and get cooking. Remember this is a non-negotiable meeting with yourself to invest in your health.

  1. Make it easy.

If you don’t like to chop and prep buy already done for you veggies like kale slaw, broccoli slaw, frozen cauliflower rice, frozen cubed butter nut squash, spiralized zucchini, beets and sweet potato.

You can pre-prep foods to make it convenient too – make smoothie bags for easy breakfasts, bagged freezer meals or crockpot meals for busy days.

KEEP IT SIMPLE. Simplicity is key for sticking with it. How can you make this work for you?

4. Make a list of healthy foods you love.

Writing them down is a reminder that healthy eating can be enjoyable and delicious.

It can be really tasty and fun if you want it to be. If there are healthy foods you don’t like, don’t eat them. Focus on what you love. If you love green beans see how you can add them into your menu for an easy snack or side.

I also love to do this with healthy dinner recipes. If you have a big list and keep adding to it, that can really help to plan meals and avoid food ruts.

5. Learn to cook.

If you find that your kitchen skills are lacking get inspired to learn how to cook with a fun-loving beginners mindset. Cooking your own food is really important because that way you know exactly what is in your food and you are making it readily available.

Homemade meals can often have less sugar, salt, fats and processed ingredients.

Try a cooking workshop or follow a free recipe online. There are SO many free resources on social media. If that feels over whelming buy a cookbook that looks fun for you. If you can make it less daunting you are more likely to jump in.

Here is my easy to use, nutritious Cookbook you can check out and see if it’s a great fit for you.

PREP WITH PAM: Plant-based foods that taste like love – PAM ROCCA | Health & Nutrition Coach

6.Educate yourself on Nutrition.

Nothing helps motivate more than understanding why eating healthy is so important.

If you understand that benefits of leafy greens, or that peppers are loaded with vitamin C, you might be more inclined to add them in. There are loads of free resources like podcasts, books, IG influencers, naturopaths, dietitians, nutritionists etc.

Start to read food labels and ingredients list. The longer the list typically means more processed or filler ingredients. Add in more real whole foods (foods that don’t have an ingredients list like grapes and cucumbers). When reading food labels look at portion sizes, is there fibre? vitamin? minerals? protein? sodium and sugar are a must too. There are a lot of “healthy foods” that contain an unreal amount of sugar. I have a post for that coming out. If you want more info in the mean time check out my Sugar Detox Cookbook. Sugar Detox in 10 Days: 100+ Recipes to Help Eliminate Sugar Cravings: Rocca, Pam: 9781646117529: Books – Amazon.ca

7. Do it with a friend or family member.

Don’t get me wrong you are doing this for you, and you should be your own biggest cheerleader but support from others can go a long way when it comes to creating habit changes.

Get motivated to do it with a friend, your partner or do it for your kids. You are their greatest role model.

Having a partner in this journey can help with support, accountability and you can help keep each other on track. You can also cook and meal prep together to make it more fun. Sharing strategies together can keep you motivated.

8. Focus on adding in the good instead of avoiding the bad.

I typically never use words like good and bad when it comes to food because it is neutral. Society has placed labels and emotions on certain foods. Focus on adding in more of what you want is a much healthier mindset when it comes to eating well.

Think about eating to fuel your body, have energy, absorb nutrients, antioxidants, fibre, macronutrients. All of these things fuel the trillion cells that make up your body.

The goal is to eat healthy MOST OF THE TIME.

You do not need to eat perfect, begin to listen to your body. If you eat something and don’t feel good, omit it. If you overeat, learn to tune into hunger and fullness cues more. If you eat on the run practice mindful eating (I will be sharing a post soon on how to practice this if it feels new to you.

If it’s family pizza night, enjoy a slice of pizza guilt-free and think about what can you add in as a side to get some nutrients in.

The idea is to keep your mindset positive when thinking about food, fueling your body and really eating from a place of self-love.

9. Find a healthier alternative for your favourite foods and snacks.

Love ice cream but dairy gives you gas? try homemade nice cream or avocado mousse or a chocolate or berry smoothie bowl.

Love chips but hate waking up puffy? Try roasted chickpeas or chia seed crackers with hummus.

It’s totally ok to indulge in moderation, but if it’s a slippery slope for you maybe challenge yourself to avoid triggering foods for 14-21 days to set a new healthy habit.

10. Begin to develop a solid morning routine and good health habits.

When you wake up and do things that make you feel great it creates momentum and motivation to keep doing things that make you feel great.

Good health habits have the same effect. Poor health habits can trigger a downward spiral, when you eat foods that make you feel sluggish you have less energy to want to be active or cook healthy meals.

What does a healthy morning routine look like to you? Write it down.

Here is my magic morning routine:

  • hydration – drink 1 full glass of water and have two probiotics
  • coffee or tea while reading inspirational book
  • journaling or affirmation – setting intentions for the day
  • movement & meditation
  • fuel – love a good breakfast smoothie
  • begin my work day feeling fabulous

Other great health habits include:

  • self-care and time for rest and relaxation
  • proper sleep – sleep deprivation can make your body crave sugary foods and make you feel hungrier throughout the day.
  • staying hydrated all day
  • goals setting/journaling
  • daily movement
  • time outside or in nature
  • quality time with friends and family
  • time being creative doing stuff you enjoy

Bonus: Let go of all emotions around food. Food does not cause shame, guilt, or any negative emotion. If it is for you investigate and get to the root of those feelings. It can help to work with a specialist, therapist or coach.

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Summary of Healthy Eating Motivation:

1. Start by setting small attainable goals for yourself.

2. Plan ahead.

3. Make it easy.

4. Make a list of foods and meals you love.

5. Learn to cook or get cooking.

6. Educate yourself on nutrition.

7. Do it with a friend or family member.

8. Focus on adding in the good instead of avoiding the bad.

9. Find a healthier alternative for your favourite foods and snacks.

10. Develop a solid morning routine and good health habits.

 

If you found this article helpful I would love to know what you think in the comment below.

If you have a great tip that I missed I would love it if you could share in the comments below.

In love and light,

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