Tue, July 16

Building healthy habits, sticking to them and integrating them as natural part of daily life

Welcome to "The Fit Life" column, where we will focus on the healthy and fit lifestyle.

New Year is a typical time for making resolutions, especially the fitness-related ones... And February is the month when most of these resolutions are already abandoned, broken and forgotten.

Therefore, I find it very pertinent to talk today about building healthy habits, sticking to them and integrating them as a natural part of your daily life: not only in January, but throughout the whole year!

Being "fit" does not mean being skinny (naturally, or as a result of constant dieting or even smoking...). On the other hand, being "fit" does not necessarily apply to those who spend many hours daily pursuing intensive forms of training, oftentimes at a cost of not being with their family and friends, not enjoying other activities and getting injured.

Being "fit" is all about balance, determination, setting achievable goals and working towards them on a daily basis. It is all about the "tortoise" approach of slowly and steadily while on your path of - and to - well-being.

Being "fit" starts deep inside of you, in your heart, at the moment when you commit yourself to making some progress towards your healthy habits each and every day. When you are "fit", you eat well: you do not have to struggle to avoid the heavily-processed food aisles at the grocery store; you simply do not even go in there! It becomes your habit: entering the grocery store, going to the fresh produce section, following along the perimeters of the milk and yoghurt fridge, the butcher, if you eat meat (where you go organic as often as you can afford!), and picking up some other healthy, non-processed carb and protein sources, as well as healthy fats. If you are "fit", eating junk does not appeal to you. In fact, if you attempt at eating any non-healthy fare, you know it is not worth it and you will feel bloated, tired and your energy levels will "crash" an hour later.

Being "fit" also means that you do not want to spend a day without some form of physical exercise: anything from a simple walk around our lovely Village through a longer hike in the Red Rocks to maybe an evening bike ride, a jog or a swim. Options and opportunities are endless! However, again, it has to come from your heart. And, once it does, you will make sure to incorporate fitness and movement into every single day and to stick to it. Simply enough: without moving around, possibly outdoors, you won't feel equally well as during the days when you exercise. Without your usual walk, the day will not be the same and you will feel that something is missing.

Being "fit" might, but does not have to include a membership at a gym, a weekly personal training or a group fitness session. Once you find your "basic fit" level, you will steadily build on that, depending on your own interests, amount of free time and health limitations. Once there is the will, your options are endless!

I am very excited to be able to share my fitness-related knowledge and experience with you and help you getting hooked on the path to well-being and fitness on the pages of The Villager.

I always welcome your questions, comments and suggestions. I am here for you to assist you, so please share your fitness- and health-related views with me! Let's start this year on a fit note!

Magdalena Romanska, Ph.D., CPT, SFS, Your Health and Fitness Expert. Her "Be Fit Fit" Blog can be read on