Never Stop Trying By: Kitty Bradshaw The road to a healthy lifestyle can quickly become overwhelming when you start to think about all the components that go into getting back on track. From counting calories, getting rid of all the foods you love, and doing physical activity on a consistent basis. Often times you’ll consider giving up and embracing the bad habits that got you into trouble in the first place. Before you lose hope, think about turning your obstacles into a game challenge. Today I am going to discuss playing the Game of Health; a activity that pits you against your former self. Each day you will make small adjustments, and work at them until they become second nature. You win the Game of Health when you see results and become motivated to continue on without feeling like it’s a chore. The goal is to focus on the long term, not just the weight loss portion. When you successfully embrace healthy lifestyle changes you will naturally lose weight and keep it off while at the same time winning at the Game of Health. Like any challenge, you have to first learn the rules. 1. As it relates to our Game of Health, you will need to identify, then educate yourself on the bad foods you like to eat. Make a list of all the foods you love to eat, and separate them into two columns, “Good vs. I Can Do Better.” 2. Do a “Food Draft” by seeking out healthy alternatives for every item listed under the “I Can Do Better” column and add those alternatives to the “Good column.” There is tons of information readily available online which can be accessed by typing in “Healthy alternatives to cupcakes” or any treat that you have a weakness for. 3. Of course in the beginning there will be food you are not willing to give up right away and that is ok. Create a healthy offense by reducing the amount of times you consume your favorite treat. Do things in moderation and/ or reduce the amount of times you indulge. For example instead of eating donuts every morning at work, consider having a piece of toast, or a half a donut, or reserving one full donut for Fridays only. Another option is visiting a nutritionist, and having them create a custom list of foods for you to eat. In our next post we will discuss physical activity which may or may not include going to the gym! Please, remember to stay encouraged and know that you are not alone in the Game of Health.