For many business owners, leaders and entrepreneurs, March marks the end of the first quarter of the year. We recognize that this is a critical time, especially when working in the fitness industry, where the sales goals and progress we make in Q1 sets the pace and gives us some indication of what the rest of the year may bring. So, as you reflect on your Q1 performance, are you starting to feel March madness set in yet? Then let me invite you to pause for a moment to think about the impact that fuel has on your focus and overall performance.
Food is fuel and what we eat impacts how we feel and the focus we can bring to going after our goals. Although you may start to feel the stress building from the drive and ambition you want and need to bring this month, take the time right now to pause and self-reflect.
There is a connection between stress levels, energy management, and food. When we are working hard and grinding down to the line, it is easy to forget to eat. We might also be more tempted to reach for quick and easy energy sources to get us through our day. What is that really doing for you body and your brain? While the not-so-healthy eating habits may have worked for you in the past, there is a point where those quick fixes and practices are going to run their course. We might also turn to food as comfort, to deal with stress or suppress feelings during challenging times. It will take courage to focus on your self-care and breaking less healthy habits in exchange for more healthier ones, and fuel for success.
Here are four tips on ways you can check-in to see what you are doing and where you might improve your nutrition habits to improve your results:
- Focus on your strengths and what you are doing well versus where you are falling short or failing, whether this is your business or in your personal nutrition practice. Think back to a week when you planned your nutritional needs (meals and snacks) around your work and exercise schedule and this preparation served you well. Success leaves clues and what you focus on you attract.
- Educate yourself on how you kickstart your day for success. The way you start your day sets you up for the rest of the day to make implementing the change much more achievable. For example, eating breakfast will help rev up your metabolism, fuel your brain and body for peak performance, and help reduce food cravings and mood swings.
- There are healthier ways you can manage stress and boost your energy without giving in to cravings that may be less healthy. Schedule a short lunch time power walk with a colleague for a quick 20-minute meeting or energy boost, rebound in your office for two minutes to lift your energy and mood. Switch out an energy drink for a chilled bottle of water that you already have in a thermos-style water bottle. I like to place four elastic bands at the bottom of my water bottle and each time I consume the bottle I move the elastic band up to the top, with a goal to move all four bands by end of the workday. Rinse and repeat after work.
- Finally, think about one small thing in your current dietary practice/nutritional habits that you would like to change. What would this be and how can you bring it into your day. Be specific, make it measurable so you can track your progress, something you can act on, relative to how you wish to improve, and set a deadline for achieving this goal. Be SMART in your approach and you will succeed!
Running a business takes time, energy, and focus. What entrepreneur or fitness business leader has time for sick days, lack of focus, and excessive stress when trying to lead a company toward success? Because what we eat has a dramatic effect on how we feel and act, creating healthier eating habits should be as important as any aspect of your personal strategy – like marketing and communications is to your business. We hope this information will get you started on the road to healthy eating and business achievements and ensures your ongoing success this year.