There are 5 key things we’re going to focus on during this 4-week improve your health challenge:
- Getting plenty of sleep
- Getting more active
- Drinking more water
- Focusing on food that helps you feel healthy – NO DIET PLAN
- Working on your mindset
Below I will explain how this challenge works and then talk about each of the key things you’ll work on for these 4-weeks.
I encourage you to track your progress as you work through this challenge
IMPORTANT: Please note that this is not official health advice. I am not a health expert or medical professional. The information contained in this challenge is simply what helps me to keep improving my health.
This is a build up challenge for better health
Okay, so what does a build-up challenge mean? It means you start this 4-week challenge where you are right now and then over the 4-weeks work on building healthy habits to a recommended level.
Here’s why. If you’re not typically someone who is already super healthy and feel you do need to improve your health but it feels like hard work, I want to help you start building up positive, healthy habits that you can stick with and they’ll make a big difference.
Let me give you an example. If you are very inactive right now and I tell you that you need to start right now doing 10,000 daily steps, I feel there’s a very high chance you’ll either stop reading or stick with it for a few days and then give up.
When I was told I was pre-diabetic (that scared me a lot), I knew I needed to get more active and generally improve my health. But I just didn’t generally find this sort of change easy and hadn’t stuck to anything.
So, I set myself a goal to walk to the end of my drive every single day. You can park 2 cars on my drive. But, here’s the thing. I had to put my shoes on and get out the door.
That’s actually half the battle for me. Once I’d done that and walked to the end of the drive I always walked further. Gradually, over the next few weeks, I set my goal post further and further away.
By increasing my activity levels and the other things I focus on in this challenge, gradually I was able to greatly improve my health. When I had my next health check I was back to normal and no longer pre-diabetic.
1. Getting plenty of sleep
Sleep, in my opinion, is massively underrated. I believe that getting enough sleep is one of the very best things you can do to improve your overall health and the way you feel in general.
When you don’t get enough sleep you are more likely to overeat or eat foods that aren’t great for your body.
You’re less likely to be physically active and a lack of sleep will massively impact how you feel, how motivated you feel and how much you’re able to follow the other steps in this challenge, so please make this a priority.
I want you to commit to being in bed ready for sleep 7- 8 hours before you need to get up. Ideally, stick to the same time for going to bed and getting up each day but the main goal for this challenge is being in bed ready for sleep 7-8 hours before you need to get up.
So, this would be ‘lights off’ and resting, not reading, scrolling your phone or anything else that’s going to keep you awake.
The only exceptions that I do encourage are listening to very gentle, relaxing music, a sleep meditation or hypnosis download – Use a device where it will just end and switch off by itself.
Here’s a blog post where I talk about some healthy living hypnosis downloads that I like.
IMMEDIATE GOAL: I’m going to encourage you to go for the full 7-8 hours straight away. I do know this might sound impossible but please make this a priority as much as you possibly can. I am also realistic and I know that some nights it’s just not possible but wherever it is do it.
2. Getting more active
On day one of this 4-week challenge I want you to go about your day as you would usually with regards to how active you are and track how many steps you do throughout the day.
The amount of steps you do on day 1 is simply your starting point. I encourage you to make a note of your daily steps – You can do this in the printable version of this IMPROVE YOUR HEALTH CHALLENGE.
Your goal is to build your daily steps up to 10,000 (or more) daily steps. You don’t need to go from doing 3000 daily steps to 10,000 daily steps straight away. Instead, try to add in a little more physical activity each day and make getting more active a habit.
For example, If your starting point is 3000 daily steps, Aim to push that up to 5000 daily steps by the end of the first week, then 7000 steps by the end of the second week and 10000 daily steps to the end of week three.
You can get your daily steps in any way you want. You can go out for walks, go jogging, do some walking/jogging on the spot, dance around the room.
If you spend a lot of time sitting down, set a timer at the top of the hour and each hour get up and move about for 5 minutes.
Some days when I know I’m not naturally going to be very active, I try to make sure I get out for an extra walk (even 5 minutes) or do a workout. I love these Indoor Workouts With Lucy Wyndham-Read.
BUILD UP: Start wherever you are with your daily steps and build up to 10,000 daily steps. Remember that you can get your steps in any way you want, it doesn’t necessarily have to be walking.
3. Drinking more water
This is such a simple thing to do but so many of us don’t drink enough water. I have days where I drink tea and fizzy drinks all day and then wonder why I feel so tired and sluggish.
Throughout this challenge I want you to build up to drinking 1.5 litres of water a day. If you’re not a big water drinker, start off with a big glass of water first thing in the morning, then gradually add in a glass of water with each meal.
Don’t include Tea/Coffee/Fizzy drinks in your water intake amount, although you can have them as extras if you really want to.
If you’re out and about, you can fill a water bottle to take out with you and drink – I actually like to have a water bottle on the go throughout the day to remind me to keep drinking my water.
Check out this blog post for more ideas to help you drink more water.
BUILD UP: Start where you are and build up to 1.5 litres of water daily. Drink more if you’re doing an exercise where you’re sweating.
4. Focus on food that helps you feel healthy
There’s no diet plan in this challenge. I totally believe that the most important thing you need to do is pay attention to the way your body feels when you eat a certain food.
Also, pay attention to how you feel in the hours after you eat. For example, if I eat a load of sweets, cake, chocolate, I tend to enjoy it at the time but often feel very tired a few hours later.
We recently had a big family get together day where we had buffet lunch with desserts, and later a BBQ with desserts. Whilst I did mostly choose lighter food that I knew my body would appreciate, I did still eat a lot and I did have desserts and little sweet treats throughout the day.
The next day I felt so tired. Yes, some of it was due to a full-on busy day but most of the tiredness was a result of what I’d eaten the day before.
Now, I’m certainly not going to tell you never to eat desserts or chocolate, etc. What I do want you to do is really start paying attention to what you eat and how it impacts your body.
I encourage you to keep a diary of what you eat and how you feel afterwards (immediately after, a few hours after and the next day). There’s a food journal included in the Printable Tracker.
Pay attention to foods that make you feel tired, foods that don’t feel comfortable in your body, and also the foods that do feel really good and give you energy. Note down any unwanted side effects of food you eat.
Here’s a really useful EFT Script to follow – EFT Energy food – This is a great script to use before meals. (more on EFT later in the challenge)
If you’re interested, I also encourage you to read my blog post on Intuitive eating. I find this to be a really positive approach to eating.
BUILD UP: Increase your awareness of how different foods impact your body and how you feel throughout the 4-week challenge.
Over the 4-weeks you’ll be able to build up a list of foods that help you feel great (eat more of these) and those that don’t (eat less of these).
5. Work on your mindset
Creating a positive mindset for healthy living is really important. I encourage you to spend time every day focusing on building a healthy living mindset.
- Start and end the day with Affirmations that support you – I’ve written many affirmation posts here on the blog to help with weight loss, healthy living and generally feeling positive – Here’s on post that I really encourage you to read – 37 Positive Affirmations For Healthy Living And Feeling Healthy
- Visualize yourself already being healthy – Here’s a really useful blog post Visualize yourself as slim and healthy
- Try daily EFT – Emotional Freedom Techniques to help improve your energy flow, release limiting beliefs that keep you stuck and help to feel great – Check out this blog post EFT and Affirmations script for healthy living I also have a special EFT Scripts for Healthy Living Collection available on my Etsy Shop.
BONUS: Check out this post on Hypnosis Downloads For Healthy Living. This is ideal to listen to at bedtime (as mentioned earlier).
Notes on EFT tapping for healthy living
I encourage you to do some EFT tapping every day throughout this challenge. A super simple script that you can follow is:
- Set-up – Tapping the side of the hand – Say: Today I’m tapping for better and better health
- Top of the head: Today I feel healthy
- Forehead: I treat my body with love and respect
- Eyebrow: Today I feel healthy
- Side of the eye: I treat my body with love and respect
- Under the eye: Today I feel healthy
- Under the nose: I treat my body with love and respect
- Under the mouth: Today I feel healthy
- Collarbone: I treat my body with love and respect
- Under the arm: Today I feel healthy
- Side of the hand: I treat my body with love and respect
I do also encourage you to check out the EFT download to help you release old, limiting beliefs about healthy living. (optional)
BUILD A DAILY HABIT: Ideally, I would like you to practice affirmations every day, morning, night and anytime you get a chance throughout the day.
Visualize at least once a day and do some daily EFT such as the one included in this post as well as some EFT to help release limiting beliefs about your health and build new beliefs that support you.
Improve your health challenge 4-week tracker
Over on my Etsy Shop you can purchase a printable copy of this 4-week improve your health challenge along with a tracker to support you throughout the challenge.
You’ll easily be able to see your progress and see what foods are best for you personally to eat to feel healthy and your body feel good. Go to 4-Week Improve Your Health Challenge & Tracker on Etsy.Follow Me: