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Samantha Low Active Health family

Samantha's Active Health Blog (Week 4): Building awareness

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It’s been about a month since I got started on my Active Health journey, and I’m now on to the third set of habits! I’m inclined to say that I am a healthier person now, given the small successes I’ve achieved with this programme.

However, my workload has been pretty heavy lately, and the stress has been getting to me. With that in mind, I’ve been focusing on awareness. I do what I can with the good nutrition habits and exercise goals, but when it comes to getting quality sleep and reducing screen time, I suppose the awareness of what I’m supposed to be doing has been helping me as I try my best. Fingers crossed that it’ll be easier once this busy period at work is over. Let’s get to my progress report for the week!

#1 Nutrition: Paying attention, so there’s no more gobbling

Eating slowly helps! Before starting on Active Health, I would gobble down all my food when I’m hungry. Now, I have been reminding myself to chew slowly and savour my food properly – this really aids satiety! Besides eating slowly, I’m also supposed to be eating till I’m just about 80% full. That’s been going fine, because eating slowly plays a part in helping me to stay on-track with the 80% rule, and I don’t end up consuming more than I actually need! I’m also pleased to share that I have been avoiding unhealthy snacks and remembering to drink one glass of water before each meal – in fact, I have gotten my friends and family to join me in the latter habit as well when we’re dining together!

#2 Physical activity: Hitting the magic 10k steps

Have I ever talked about what an amazing invention the activity tracker is? I mean, I’ve always found it useful, but now that I have to make a conscious effort to hit 10,000 steps a day, I’m appreciating it much more than before. This is because the perfectionist in me gets quite conscious when I don’t manage to hit the required amount on a particular day, and the unsatisfactory figures on the tracker serve as motivation for me to put in extra effort to “pay back” the following day! That said, I have been making sure to take the stairs and regular brisk-walking breaks, so these definitely help with the magic 10k as well.

Samantha Low Active Health Photo: Facebook

#3 Sleep: Cutting the caffeine

I’m fine with switching off my mobile alerts before bed and waking up at a consistent time. There’s just one problem – I’ve been waking up consistently at 6am to complete my work. As a result, cutting the caffeine after 2pm, which is my resolution for this week, has been pretty difficult, and I caved a couple of times. However, I have become more conscious of my choices, opting for coffee that’s less gao (strong) to take me through the day! Of course, the brisk-walking breaks have helped too, and I always remind myself to head for the door rather than the pantry when I’m tired in the afternoons!

#4 Screen time: Increasing quality of time spent with loved ones

I’ve been keeping to this week’s recommendation on eating meals without screens! This is an easy one. Not only does it allow me to focus on enjoying my food, it has also given me the chance to have good lunch conversations with my colleagues! As for the other guidelines on screen time, it has been difficult limiting my social media usage to 30 minutes a day. But it’s interesting that, somehow, with Active Health constantly at the back of my mind, I’m becoming increasingly aware whenever I pick up my mobile device.

Samantha Low Active Health Photo: Instagram.com/S.lowbutsteady

That, I hope, is a good sign, as it reminds me to limit my screen time to only what’s necessary. As I always tell myself, awareness is key.

Maybe I’m not succeeding in adhering to all of the Active Health recommendations now. But I hope that, over time, an increased awareness will help me to incorporate these habits seamlessly into my life. Follow me on Instagram (@s.lowbutsteady) to cheer me on as I try to adopt more of these habits over the next month! Till then!

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