Have you ever heard the saying “poor people make poor decisions” before?
In other words, no matter how much money a person obtains, they will never hold on to it or grow it by making poor financial decisions.
The same could be said for people who are unfit and unhealthy.
Our health and physical appearance are the results of our daily habits.
No man, it’s just genetics!
People can find excuses in many shapes and forms, but the numbers don’t lie.
Americans spend a shit ton of money on fast food. You can learn everything you need to know about a man by looking at where he spends his money and how he spends his time.
Genetics is not the reason that more than one-third of American children eat fast food every day.
I’m not saying you have to give up fast food.
Although I don’t eat fast food much anymore, I used to eat fast food several times a week and stay fit.
I’m just saying you should do a full audit on your habits and figure out if you’re doing what’s most productive to reach your fitness goals.
Here are a few habits that have worked well for me.
1. Weigh yourself daily
A lot of people think weighing yourself daily is unhealthy or obsessive.
I disagree. It’s unhealthy to obsess over the number on the scale, but there’s nothing unhealthy about monitoring it.
Your weight is going to fluctuate all the time and there’s no reason to get worried over +/- three to five pounds.
After a few weeks or so, you’ll spot the patterns in your weight fluctuation and won’t feel the urge to overreact to the number anymore.
The benefit of this habit is being able to prevent fat gain.
If you gain a few pounds of fat, you can easily lose it in a week or two. By catching it early you prevent a snowball effect from happening.
It’s not that complicated. All you need is some basic math skills (or an app) and you can have full control of your caloric intake.
2. Prepare meals the easy way
Fast food is appealing because it’s convenient.
At least, that’s what always caught my attention.
Plenty of people would actually eat healthier if they believed it was convenient.
The keyword is “believe” because eating healthy is just as easy and convenient, but most people believe otherwise.
Last year I published an article showing you how to prepare meals the easy way. Read that if you think you’d benefit from preparing meals in advance.
Since changing up my eating habits, I don’t do any kind of meal prep anymore.
Mention meal prep also
3. Eat whole foods 80% of the time
Eating whole foods all day every day gets old.
Actually, it’s not that the food gets old because it’s quite tasty. It gets old not eating the other stuff.
Rather than trying to go all-in on the whole foods and just giving up after a few weeks — why not choose a habit that’s sustainable for the long-term?
This is a simple protocol that’s worked for me:
- Eat whole foods for breakfast and lunch Monday through Friday
- Eat whole foods for breakfast on Saturday
You’re getting a significant amount of calories from whole foods, but still have enough room for a social life and enjoying dinner.
4. Take a power nap
Part of reaching your fitness goals is avoiding burnout.
You want to push yourself, but you also need to sustain your energy throughout the day for work, family, and everything else.
If you aren’t recovering properly and other areas of your life start suffering, you’re going to have problems.
And that’s why I’m a firm believer in the power nap, despite the fact that I don’t do them the “right way.”
I’m one of those people who have always hated naps.
They just don’t appeal to me.
However, when the time is right, a 5-10 minute power nap can be just the trick to get an extra spark of energy. But it’s still pretty rare for me to take a nap.
Instead, I have my own version of a power nap that works surprisingly well.
I can’t guarantee that it will work as well for you, but I can guarantee that it won’t hurt to try.
5. Drink a glass of water between each alcoholic beverage
Alcohol can be an obstacle in the way of your fitness goals.
Not only are you getting all of those empty calories, but you’re also getting Whataburger at 3 am.
But that doesn’t mean you can’t drink in moderation and still get in shape or stay in shape.
An easy trick to prevent hangovers and to keep from getting too drunk in the first place is drinking a small glass of water in between each alcoholic beverage.
Nothing fancy about this — just plain, common sense.
Most people just don’t think to do it. Now maybe you will.
6. Replace one meal with a big salad
Losing fat is all about burning more calories than you consume.
Any easy way to reduce your daily caloric intake is to replace one meal with a big salad.
If I want to shed a few pounds of bodyfat, I can do so in a matter of a few weeks by simply replacing my lunch with a big, leafy, green salad.
It needs to be a BIG salad so you actually get full and stay full.
Also, don’t load your salad up with a bunch of high-fat salad dressing. Otherwise, you might as well just eat anything and forget about it.
A little bit of dressing goes a long way — or you can find salad dressings that have little-to-no calories. I’ve never been a fan of that kind of stuff, but some people love it.
Figure out what works for you.
7. Break a sweat
Sweating is good for you, it’s healthy, and it’s a sign that you’re putting your body to use.
Unless, it’s just really hot outside. Then it’s just a sign that you’re really hot.
This is one of my daily habits and one of my favorite habits overall.
I’ve found that my energy levels are higher, I feel happier, and staying lean is significantly easier when I do something that causes me to break a sweat.
That could be going to the gym, going for a brisk walk with my dog, mowing the lawn, or just a night of marathon sex.
What you do isn’t as important as the fact that you’re doing it.
Plus, sweating has a ton of benefits proven by science.
8. Drink a gallon of water per day
I talk about this habit all the time and I’m going to keep talking about it until everyone is drinking AT LEAST a gallon of water per day.
I drink closer to two gallons now.
If you want to know all of the health benefits from being exceptionally hydrated, read this article I wrote — How to Drink a Gallon of Water a Day (And Why You Would Want To)
This is one of those things that you have to do for a couple of weeks to see for yourself the difference it makes.
9. Stretch and foam roll
Injury prevention is key to staying active and reaching your fitness goals.
Even a minor injury can you set you back for a few weeks, if you’re not performing at your best.
The other issue is one of maintaining posture, as well. If you sit at a desk all day, like most of us do, your posture is likely suffering.
Fortunately, 10-15 minutes of foam rolling and stretching solves both concerns.
You’ll feel more comfortable throughout the day, you’ll look better from having better posture, and you’ll perform at your best when you exercise.
10. Park far away from entrances
You’ve probably heard this before — if you park far away you’ll get those extra steps in and all those steps add up…
Well, that’s true, but they don’t add up to THAT much.
However, I think this is a great habit because it keeps you in the right mindset.
It keeps you focused on burning calories.
Of course, that only matters if you’re trying to lose fat. If you’re trying to build muscle, park as close as possible and let those legs heal from squats and deads.
Whatever your fitness goals are — to lose fat, build muscle, increase strength, train for a sport — you need to do consistent daily actions to keep making progress.
The biggest problem for most people is not being consistent.
They have no control over their daily habits and routines.
There are many paths to success in any endeavor, but one of the most common patterns among people who are successful in any field is their discipline to stay consistent with their daily habits.
Of course, this is a non-issue for us because we follow the guidelines in Hacking Your Habits.
It would suck to be those other people who run in circles year after year because they have no control over their daily actions.
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What do you think? Do you agree, disagree or have any thoughts to add? Let me know in the comments below.
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