Tuesday 13 February 2018

There’s Positive Changes Afoot in 2018 with #BootsLittleBoosts

healthy supplements

We are now well in to February and my year has started off well. January was all about having my operation for menorrhagia and then healing from that and now I feel like life can really take-off. I no longer have a lack of energy, nor am I anaemic. 2018 is a year that I plan to believe more in myself and in God’s great plans for me, I wrote about it at the beginning of the year and posted my first update last week. The area of my life that I really need to get a grip on is my health and specifically my weight, which sadly, is affecting my health and not in a good way.

However, I am feeling very positive and I am going to take lots of little steps that all add up and will make a difference. If I’m honest many of these steps (or changes) are things I have committed to before and then they’ve not happened or I’ve let them slip but I’m not going to let that stop me. I have to believe that mentally I am now in the right place and that since I have been freed from my terrible (and constant) bleeding that things in my life can change for the better.

The fear of failure must no longer stop me. I’ve been reading a book recently (yet another one) called ‘The Year of Saying Yes’ by Helen Doyle and it is just a fiction book. A great story about a woman called Isobel who changes her life by saying yes to a series of monthly dares and it has been so helpful to me. I have come to realise that often I say no or I am passive in my actions because I am scared it won’t all work out. What the book has made me realise is that it is better to try, better to take one step, better to do it imperfectly, than not at all.

It felt like a God-moment when Boots recently got in touch and asked if I’d like to take part in their #BootsLittleBoosts campaign as this is all about how I am boosting my health and wellness routine for this New Year. They want to know how I’m going to shake off the excess of the winter festivities and to embrace the year ahead with new vigour. It fits in perfectly with my new ‘Believe’ philosophy.
So here goes, I know that Little Steps = Big Changes if I’m consistent and I’m going to set my focus in four key areas -

1.  Sleep
I am incredibly lucky that sleep comes fairly easily to me. I don’t tend to have a problem with insomnia and I go off easily. However, I have realised I do not get enough sleep as I spend too long on the laptop and then want to read (some super fluffy chick-lit) and that means my bedtime gets pushed to midnight or 1am.

So my little change is to be in bed by 10pm at least 5 nights a week so I can read for an hour guilt free and then when the light goes off at 11pm, I’ll still get 8 hours sleep. This should make a massive difference to my energy levels and also by ability to be strong and not give in to my unhealthy food cravings. If you need to find out how to get more energy then check out Boots sterling advice.

bedside cabinet

Boots were kind enough to send me some lavender pillow mist and it smells great so despite not having an issue sleeping I am going to use this as I think it will make me feel like I’m being pampered! As will the wonderful Sanctuary Spa candle and 5 Minute Moisture Boost Mask, which will hopefully sort out my dry winter skin.

2.  Healthy Eating
I have a lot of weight I need to shift and if I try and focus on the end result it all feels like a very big uphill battle. Eight stone is a whole person and it is probably going to take me a year or two to shift that if I want it to stay off. I’ve been talking to my GP about my health and weight for a good year or so but it all felt so unmanageable when I was wiped out and anaemic from my terrible bleeding. Now I have enough energy to be able to focus.

I am taking Orlistat (as prescribed by my GP) which is a fat binder and this means I need to be very careful about what I eat as otherwise I’ll experience very explosive symptoms (if you get what I mean). So anything other than a healthy diet can’t be considered currently. Luckily I do love a wide range of food and I am very happy to enjoy a lot of vegetables, pulses and proteins and this means far less processed foods and much more home-cooked meals prepared from scratch with minimal ingredients.

Because I am taking Orlistat not all the nutrients in my food will be absorbed by my body and thus I need to take a multi-vitamin supplement. I was going to buy just a pot of regular tablets but Boots sent me a tube of Re-Energise tablets which are packed with vitamins and minerals to help me stay healthy and full of energy.

healthy supplements

Boots also sent me through a number of other supplements and if I am honest some are not things I have tried before. I received Manuka honey, which I’ve heard and knew was some kind of super honey but I had no idea it was graded according to its UMF (Unique Manuka Factor) and that the higher the number the greater the antibiotic healing power. This stuff can actually be put on open wounds to aid healing or eaten to reduce inflammation, help arthritis and diabetes, reduce high cholesterol and to fight sinus infections. This will definitely be my toast topping once a day.

I also received a tub of Womens’s Best All-in-one Whey Protein for making shakes and I have to be honest this troubled me a little. After trying numerous fad diets including those with shakes I am always dubious of them but I soon realised this isn’t part of a cut-out food and just drinks shakes diet. This is to be used as a post workout boast or a snack to get a good injection of protein, which fills you up and keeps you satisfied longer than carbs or fats. So I am going to give this a go for when I finish exercising and need a snack.

3.  Exercise
As well as being better with my food I need to move more. I have charged up my FitBit and strapped it back to my wrist and I’m going to build back up to my daily 12.500 steps which is the goals I like to achieve when feeling well.
I’ve got an induction at a new gym on 20th February and then I will use it twice a week whilst my girls are at local clubs. Then come September JJ will be old enough to accompany me there and we can be fitter together.

As the weather improves I know I’ll want to start doing more and it becomes much easier to exercise. Miss E is a bit exercise obsessed and will start to drag me out for a walk/ run around our lake most days too. We’ve probably got another month or so until it is light or warm enough to do this in the evening.

christian flat lay

4.  Being Kind to Myself
This last one is all about being kind to me. Celebrating the things I have done well in the day and not picking up on the one extra biscuit I had or the fact I was 2,000 steps off my goal. Its common knowledge that people do far better when they are motivated and celebrated than when they feel down and guilty about choices they have made.

For me my Christian faith is a very big part of my life, so time with God, prayer, journaling, reading devotionals and listening to great podcasts is important. I try to take time each day but honestly of late it hasn’t been happening half as frequently as it should, so I vow to make me a priority over the housework and over other obligations.

I have a set of affirmations on my mirror in my bedroom and I need to get back to reading these each day and believing what I took the time to write down. I have value, just by being me. I don’t have to do anything to earn God’s love and I can’t lose it. I have got this and I can do it. I just have to believe it and take the steps to make it happen.

list of affirmations

I’m feeling so positive about 2018 and I’m now off to a 3 days workshop to study the Enneagram and to learn a little more about my personality and why I do the things I do. I think this will be a really good investment of time in me.

If you fancy making some changes to your life (however small) to help it change for the better then I’d advise looking at the Boots Wellness webpages as they have loads of great advise on how you can give yourself a little boost. I particularly like their happiness hacks.

Do let me know if you’ve set some goals and maybe we can support each other and keep ourselves accountable? I think that’s always helpful.

Thanks for reading, Mich x

Why not pin this post for later?

pin image for taking time for yourself

Disclosure: This post is in conjunction with Boots but all thoughts are my own. I have not been instructed what to write and I remain honest, as always. 

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