January symbolizes an opportunity to reset, realign, and recreate our goals — and boy, are we ready! After what seems like a never-ending year, we’re welcoming 2021 with open arms. While this past year was rough (to put it lightly) we’ll admit — 2020 taught us some valuable lessons! Namely, the much-needed reminder to slow down and prioritize our health.
Take this mindful lesson into the new year! Don’t let the incessant ads for detox teas and juice cleanses pressure you into creating unattainable wellness goals. After the year we’ve had — be gentle with yourself. Step away from the scale and put the diet foods down! Let’s start the new year on a positive note, shall we? We’re giving you all the tools to succeed with the ultimate 2021 wellness kit. Whether you’ve made your New Year’s Resolutions or not, our 3-step approach to creating your own 2021 wellness kit will inspire healthy changes well into the new year! Think of this as your mapped out resource for creating a balanced lifestyle in all essential areas: nutrition, self-care, and fitness. We’re giving you the best tips on how to kick off 2021 on a healthful note and maintain the motivation all year long.
Step One: Prioritize Healthy Eating
#1 Adopt One Small Healthy Eating Change Per Month
Small changes build the foundation for lasting, sustainable results. We get it — in a society where instant gratification is the norm, it can be hard to think long-term. But, try to envision where you’ll be in a year from now! When it comes to your diet, try making one healthy eating change per month. Before you know it, you’ll have racked up twelve lasting habits. Don’t know where to start? Add these suggestions to your 2021 wellness kit!
Replace soda or sugary drinks with healthier alternatives like seltzer (try La Croix, Poppi, or Topo Chico!)
Instead of cutting out all meat, start with Meatless Mondays
Try a new healthy recipe once a week — it will encourage you to use foods you don’t normally eat while having fun in the kitchen!
Want to simplify healthy eating in 2021? Consider FitOn PRO, where you’ll find nutritionist-developed recipes that make healthy eating easy and delicious.
Water is needed for just about every important bodily function (think: transporting nutrients, lubricating muscles, and joints, promoting youthful skin, and maintaining optimal digestion). Even when we are the slightest bit dehydrated (a fluid loss of 1-2%), our overall health can decline! Sip your way to good health this year and make hydration a priority!
#3 Count Colors, Not Calories!
If you’re going to count anything when it comes to your diet — count colors, not calories! Think in terms of abundance and nourishment, rather than restriction. While some people find structure in calorie counting, this way of thinking can lead to a restrictive mindset. Instead of focusing on what shouldn’t be on your plate, consider what you can add! Aim to “eat the rainbow” throughout the day or week, incorporating as many different colored fruits and veggies as you can! Think: the more colors you add, the more nutrients you’re getting.
Step Two: Practice Self-Care
#1 Create Mindfulness With Meditation
2021: the year of mindfulness! Research shows meditation can benefit mood, memory, stress, and sleep — so, you better believe we’re making meditation a part of our 2021 wellness kit! Julianne Byun, a yoga teacher, international retreat curator, lululemon ambassador, and the co-founder of WITH:IN, an online community for practitioners to journey inward, together, offers expert insight on how to elevate your meditation practice (whether you’re a meditation guru or are just starting out!)
For The Newbie: Keep it simple! Byun suggests starting with 3-5 minutes of sitting in stillness, using your breath as your point of focus. Establish a slow and steady rhythm for your inhale and exhale. Byun suggests trying a 4 count in and a 4 count out. In your stillness, you might witness thoughts come and pull your awareness adrift. When that happens, Byun suggests shifting your attention back to the sensation of your breath. The aim is not to empty the mind or to make the mind stop. Rather, to allow the mind to be led by the breath.
For The Seasoned Practitioner: Consider that consistency is key to growth, says Byun. If you aren’t already doing so, commit to meditating at the same time every day so that it becomes in a sense, a ritual. Then, give yourself permission to explore. Expand your practice with new techniques and teachers (and enjoy the ride), says Byun! Sign up for free and browse the FitOn meditation category to start your own meditation practice in 2021. From morning mindset meditations to before-bed options, there’s a meditation no matter what you’re looking for.
#2 Snooze Your Way To Better Health
When it comes to overall well-being, sleep is one of the best wellness tools! That’s why we’re making sleep a priority in our 2021 wellness kit. Studies show inadequate sleep can lead to weight gain, derailing weight loss efforts even when calories are reduced! This leads us to believe sleep is just as important as your diet when it comes to maintaining good health. Proper sleep hygiene has been shown to boost productivity, mood, and even athletic performance. If you’re struggling to find a good sleep routine.
#3 Morning Journaling Practice
A morning journaling practice or gratitude journal has been shown to benefit overall health and can make a great addition to your 2021 wellness kit. Don’t know where to start? Byun agrees, the first sentence can feel like the hardest part! If you’re feeling stuck, Byun recommends trying some of these journaling prompts:
- Right now I feel.
- I’m letting go of.
- I’m inviting in.
Step Three: Make Time For Movement
#1 Make Exercise A Regular Part Of Your Routine
Our 2021 wellness kit wouldn’t be complete without integrating regular movement! Before we continue, let’s make something clear. We’re not talking about a grueling workout plan (that solely exists as a means of self-punishment for an overindulgent holiday season). No — the takeaway here is to regularly move your body in a way that feels good, inside and out! Give yourself 5-15 minutes of movement in the morning (before the day gets away from you), suggests Byun. Again, consistency is key! “Committing to a time and duration that feels doable (dare I say even, easy) will help to create a regular movement practice,” says Byun.
#2 Find What Works Best For You
Speaking of regular movement — while you keep the time consistent, let the movement be free, says Byun. Allow yourself to get curious. Maybe you’ll spend your 5-15 minutes of daily movement rolling around on your back. Maybe you’ll do 10 sun salutations. Maybe, you’ll feel the urge to dance! Try on anything and everything till you find what feels GOOD and nourishing in your body, says Byun. Don’t be surprised if 5 minutes on your mat magically turns into a 30-minute FitOn Full Body Yoga Flow. When you build your 2021 wellness kit, find a form of movement that works (and feels!) best for you.
#3 Consider Adopting A Yoga Practice
Calling all yogis! Hint: you don’t need to be flexible or experienced to consider yourself a yogi. Adopting (or maintaining) a yoga practice is a tool we welcome you to add to your 2021 wellness kit. As a seasoned yogi and teacher, Byun is a strong advocate of a routine yoga practice. Yoga can help to keep our minds calm and stable, our bodies strong, balanced, and adaptable, and most importantly, yoga offers us a grand invitation to return to the power of our hearts, says Byun.
“Yoga for me is a practice of feeling the full spectrum of our aliveness. With it will come joy as well as grief, ease as well as difficulty, hope as well as fear — and our ability to feel into it all, and through it all, makes all the difference,” says Byun.
With a wide range of sequences and flows, download the FitOn App and find what works best for you!
Let Your 2021 Wellness Kit Guide You All Year Long
One of the reasons New Year’s Resolutions don’t last is because they’re created out of haste. While we often feel a sense of pressure to make our goals as soon as January 1 hits, there’s no real rush — take your time! Get clear on your goals. This is meant to be a lasting lifestyle, not a quick fix. Let this 3-step approach to creating your own 2021 wellness kit motivate you in building a regime that works for you and your goals! If you start off strong but feel your motivation fizzling out as the year goes on — that’s ok! (and completely normal). Revisit our wellness map and try something new! Remember: this is your journey. Have fun with it, and create a plan that feels good for you!