As a smart snacking brand, go ahead! aims to help women stick to their healthy intentions in an enjoyable way and to celebrate the feeling of making smart decisions, it has teamed up with a squad of fitness and wellness experts (including me) to become a ‘virtual buddy’ for those looking for inspiration and motivation this summer. But, in a break with traditional fitness and wellness online guides, the tips and tutorials in ‘The go ahead! Summer Buddy Project’ will have a twist – they are all designed to be done with a friend, to help you stay motivated!
Let’s get started…
The summer is now in full swing – you’ve got your summer wardrobe poised for the next heatwave, your favourite workout app has been used at least three times a week this month and you’ve done really well at swapping chips for salad and no pudding, but there’s one problem, you’ve been here before and you know it never lasts. Eventually you end up rewarding yourself with a glass of wine or a piece of cake and before you know it, all of your good intentions have been undone.
So how can you celebrate your smart choices without ruining all your hard work?
We all need rewarding and you absolutely deserve to celebrate your smart choices, however if the reward leaves you filled with regret, it’s less of a gift to yourself and more of a booby prize that takes you back to square one.
If you’re not having fun you’re not doing it right, right? So tell me, who do you have the most fun with? For me, it’s with my best friends, so here are five tips to help you celebrate your smart choices with your like minded bezzies who just like you, want to feel their best and live a life that’s fun too.
1: Dedicate reward time together more often
The more often you dedicate time to acknowledge the smart choices you have both made the less you will feel like you’re owed something. The simple act of acknowledging your accomplishment by dedicating a moment in time to it, will continue to support you in making more smart choices and less of the rash “But I deserve it” decisions.
BUDDY TIP: Whenever you see each other, verbally affirm what you are dedicating this time together for. For example, you might say; “When we go to the cinema this Friday, this is a reward to myself for exercising this week even though I felt tired – what are you going to acknowledge and dedicate this time to?”
2: Text each other to share your daily accomplishments
Long term success doesn’t happen over night, it’s about all of the small steps that you take over a long period of time. The decisions you make on a daily basis may feel small at the time but the biggest shifts can come from what feel like the smallest choices.
BUDDY TIP: Set up a WhatsApp or Facebook group with an inspirational name and then agree on a daily time that you will message each other with the small (or big) smart choices that you have made that day. Always remember to congratulate each other!
3: Cook fortnightly dinner dates at home
Whenever you are trying to create change in your life it’s important to create a supportive environment for yourself too. This can mean not being in environments that encourage you to make choices you may regret. It’s much easier to make smart choices in your home because this is an environment that you can control.
BUDDY TIP: Based on the smart choices that work for you, challenge yourself to cook really special dinners for one another. A little bit of healthy competition can be fun – see who can come up with the best reward ideas every other week.
4: Plan a big reward to celebrate 12 months of smart choices
We all want our smart choices to be for life rather than for a few months on and a few months off. Having something really exciting to work towards can help us to not give up, making sure that we see it through until it becomes a part of our lifestyle.
BUDDY TIP: What have you both always dreamed of doing together but lack of time and money have meant that you haven’t been able to? Set a date for your dream celebration together and then agree on an amount of money that you’re happy with and then every time you make a smart choice, put that amount away – 10p, £1 or £10, it’s totally up to you.
5: Do a vision board together
All change starts with a vision and sharing your vision makes it much stronger. A vision is there to help you paint a picture so that you have clarity about the direction you’re heading in and to feel super inspired and motivated making even more smart choices.
BUDDY TIP: Grab a load of magazines, a big piece of card, scissors and some glue, then invite your buddy over for a creative evening of vision boarding. Talk though your boards together explaining each of your goals. Then after 6 months, come together again to congratulate one another on what you’ve accomplished from your board so far.
Remember, the most important thing is to not beat yourself up about any of your choices. Too often our go to response is to give ourselves a hard time for any choices we’ve made that we are unhappy with. Instead try asking yourself “Would I speak to my buddy like this?” and if the answer is no, share what you were saying to yourself with your buddy. As soon as you hear yourself out loud, you’ll realise how negative it sounds and with your buddy’s help, you can change how you feel to something much more positive.
All of the tips, videos, tutorials and inspiration can be found on the go ahead! social media channels and will be released throughout the summer for people to get ahead (both mentally and physically) this summer. You can also pose questions and get them answered by myself and the go ahead! squad of experts Q&As via the go ahead! Facebook page.
HI, I’M LYDIA KIMMERLING
I’ll help you explore and discover more of what makes you happy.
Think about how you look and feel right after you’ve been on holiday. There’s a spring in your step and any frown lines have softened. Your eyes are sparkling because your life is sparkling. But it’s not how amazing your life looks to others that makes it amazing, it’s how you feel about your life that makes it shine.
Let’s start now. THE FIRST STEP IS TAKING THE HAPPINESS TEST…