Think Small

I’ve never been very good at math.  Or maybe it’s that I’ve never invested much time into math.

There is, however, one equation that I am very invested in.

The ol’ calories in vs. calories out.

My body started to “store” a little extra over the last few months.  Not much but I notice every pound-plus or minus-on my 5’3/4″  frame.  I knew it was happening; a little more food, more drinks than usual, and a little less exercise.  Like I said, it’s basic math.  My eating habits didn’t take a dramatic turn and it wasn’t like I was suddenly laying around all day everyday.  Just a little more in and a little less out.

Starting at the beginning of November I reversed the pattern in a small way.  Yep, a small way.  I started walking a little more, making my exercise sessions just a little harder, and being more conscious of what goes in my mouth.  My calorie intake probably only shifted down about few hundred a day, max, but it was enough to tip the scales and say “so long” to those pounds.

I know that this is easier said than done and easier done when it’s just a few pounds that you are contending with but the math is the same no matter what.  And so is my belief that making changes comes a lot easier when we think small.  Small shifts, rather than huge overhauls, won’t turn your life end over end, leaving you to try to figure out which end is up.

This is especially important this time of year, when food is plentiful, drinks are flowing, late nights full of parties are standard, and the days are short, dark, and cold. This is not the time to make drastic changes or big lifestyle decisions.  During this time especially I like to think of exercise and healthy eating as nourishing little gifts to myself and my loved ones, because the better I take care of myself the more pleasant I am to be around!  Not to mention that making healthy, nourishing choices can be the gift of a positive influence to those around you.

Pounds are not [just] a vanity issue.  Extra pounds increase the risk for many types of cancer, heart disease, diabetes, sleep issues, joint problems, and hormonal imbalances.   It doesn’t take even take that much extra for a lot of these, I notice a few excess pounds in my knees almost immediately.

What are your favorite small shifts to eat better/less/more consciously?  How about to get moving more?