HABIT CHANGE #6: Don’t Count Calories, Count This Instead

Green apple and Weight scale,measure tap with fresh vegetable, clean water and sport equipment for women diet slimming.  Diet and Healthy Concept
Don't count calories. Count these instead!
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on linkedin
Share on email

In Habit #6 of our 7-part Healthy Habits series, we’re going to chat about the thing you should really be counting, and it’s not calories or pounds.

STOP COUNTING CALORIES

Too many people think the key to losing weight or getting healthy is to constantly monitor their ratio of calories eaten to calories burned. The challenge with this thinking is that calories are not made equal.  

Your body doesn’t recognize 100 calories of potato chips to be the same as 100 calories of spinach. 

It’s time to forget the mantra “Calories In, Calories Out” and stop counting your calories.

INSTEAD, YOU NEED TO START COUNTING YOUR STEPS.

Do you know that how you move (or don’t move) throughout the day is impacting your weight, your digestion, your blood pressure, and even your cognitive, productive thinking?

In Habit Change #2, the New Smoking, I talked about how prolonged sitting is actually decreasing your life expectancy. Now it’s time to go beyond your new habit of standing more at work, and additionally address your body’s need to get moving every day.

Your body needs regular movement throughout the 11+ hours of your day that you’re not spending sleeping or eating. The longer you are sedentary, the more you increase the bad cholesterol (HDL), reduce your metabolism, and increase your fat retention.

In fact, research studies have found that the longer you are sedentary, you reduce your fat burning enzyme down to 10% of normal.

Being a Weekend Warrior or taking a fitness class a couple of times a week does not make up for your lack of movement within each and every day of the week. 

This means that the benefits of your gym workout this morning will be negated if you then sit for 9+ hours today.


IT’S TIME TO ADD “INCIDENTAL EXERCISE” TO OUR EVERYDAY WAY OF LIFE.

We need to stop thinking of “exercise” as black and white: the thinking that we need to get to the gym to work out or you shouldn’t workout at all. Instead, we need to add Incidental Exercise to our day, all day, every day.

Women’s Health & Fitness magazine defines incidental exercise as “the exercise we get during daily activities and can be done in little bite-size chunks throughout the day,” and suggests you start viewing and measuring these chunks as the foundation of your total daily activity.

It’s time to start measuring how many steps you’re walking in a day, not how many times you went to the gym this week.

DANIELLE ATCHESON,
FUNCTIONAL NUTRITION & LIFESTYLE MEDICINE SPECIALIST


HOW TO ADD “INCIDENTAL EXERCISE” INTO YOUR DAY

Look to do one or all of these three things to reduce your daily sedentary levels – no gym membership is required.

BE A HABIT SHIFTER IN 1-2-3: 

1. GOT 30 MINS? Give these a try at work tomorrow:

Have a Walk ‘n Talk meeting or get out of the office for a nice outdoor walk after lunch. 

Walking just 30 minutes a day for 6 days a week has been proven to be the sweet spot for daily movement.

2. DON’T HAVE 30 MINUTES? Then take a different route for 10 minutes:

Use the restroom on a different floor; use the stairs instead of the elevator. 

Studies show that there is almost the same health benefit of chunking your movement into 10 minutes three times a day.

3. Start tracking your steps.

You’ll need a way to track your steps and daily incidental exercises so get a Fitness Bracelet / Wearable. There are so great fitness bracelets and Smartphone apps (even free ones) to choose from these days, making it easier than ever to make walking fun again. 

Next up is the last of this Healthy Habits 7-part series. If you’ve found value from this series, then I invite you to check out my Health Shift Formula™ online coaching program. You can learn more about it over here. It may be just the thing you’re looking for to start making a difference to your health.

With the last habit #7, I’m going to close out with some kindergarten-esque fun that your child, niece, or nephew will want to join in on. 

Track this new habit:

Check off this habit in your Healthy Habits Tracker (download yours for free here).

Share:

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Danielle Atcheson, NBC-HWC, CHN, LMC, CGP

Danielle Atcheson, NBC-HWC, CHN, LMC, CGP

Danielle Atcheson is on a mission to inspire healthier living using the power of micro-habits.

She’s a popular speaker, a board-certified health & wellness coach, and founder of One Degree Health.

As a former Fortune 500 executive, she knows firsthand how a busy schedule can interfere with prioritizing our health.

Danielle started One Degree Health to share her Micro-Habit Mindset and wellness formula with other busy professionals through engaging workshops, online coaching & nutrition programs, and private coaching.

Founder & Chief Wellness Officer, One Degree Health; Functional Nutritionist, Lifestyle Medicine Specialist, Board-Certified Health & Wellness Coach, Certified Gluten-Free Practitioner, Plant-Based Nutrition certified from Cornell University.

Schedule Your Free Session with Me

One Degree Health & Founder As Seen and Heard In

The-Denver-Post
Mind-Body-Radio
5280-Magazine
The-Denver-Post
Mind-Body-Radio
5280-Magazine
Trouvaille-Minnesota
Fearless-And-Fit-Womens-Wellness-Retreat
SecondActWomen-BizLifeCon

DISCLAIMER: The contents of this blog and website are informational only, and should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, nor as a substitute for professional medical care. As with all health & wellness information, always consult your professional healthcare providers before taking any medical action.

Share:

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Get The Latest Health & Wellness News

Subscribe to our Wellness Wednesday newsletter

Includes New, Delicious Recipes Each Week!

+ Get our FREE Healthy Habits Tracker to jumpstart your wellness journey.

We won’t spam or sell your info. Unsubscribe any time. 

Photo by Porapak Apichodilok from Pexels

World Health Day 2021: The Power of Prevention

Today is World Health Day 2021. This year’s theme is all about Prevention. Let’s talk about six crucial habits that will help you prevent disease and lead a long and healthy life.

Read More »
Photo by ELEVATE from Pexels

The Power of Laughter

With April Fool’s Day around the corner, we’re exploring the power of laughter and its effect on our bodies and minds. Is laughter the best medicine?

Read More »
WFPB Vegan Black Bean Protein Brownies

Black Bean Protein Brownies (WFPB, Vegan)

Remove the guilt with these WFPB Vegan Black Bean Protein Brownies that are sure to delight. Perfect for dessert, brunch, or a decadent snack.

Read More »
Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

Navigating Grief & Loss

Whether seeking support to help yourself through the process of loss or wanting to support a loved one who is grieving, we hope this post helps you.

Read More »
Photo by Prateek Katyal on Unsplash

5 Easy Stress Relievers for Day-to-Day Stress

You can alleviate this day-to-day stress by making some small tweaks to what you’re already doing. And the best part, is that these don’t take a lot of time – they integrate into habits you already have.

Read More »

How to Order a Healthier Margarita

Today is #NationalMargaritaDay! While tequila is touted as a healthier alcohol option, margaritas tend to be sugar and toxin bombs on our system. Here’s how to order a healthier margarita.

Read More »

Feeling Anxious? Start Clapping

When you start to feel a wave of anxiety come on, interrupt your thoughts with action. Something as simple as clapping, jumping, or taking the stairs can snap you back.

Read More »
OneDegreeHealth-Chocolate Raspberry Chia Pudding Recipe

Chocolate Raspberry Chia Pudding

Our WFPB chocolate raspberry chia pudding makes for both a healthy snack or a decadent dessert (that tastes like you’re cheating on your diet).

Read More »
Spirulina-Smoothie-Workout-Recovery-One-Degree-Health-Recipe

Spirulina Smoothie

This Spirulina Smoothie is best as a post-workout drink. Looking for weight loss? Then suggest swapping out the banana, mango, and orange, replacing them with frozen organic berries (blueberries, raspberries).

Read More »

Moroccan Lentil Detox Soup

Try this delicious whole-food plant-based Moroccan Lentil Detox Soup from One Degree Health. {WATCH HOW-TO VIDEO}

Read More »
Get The Latest Health & Wellness News + FREE Habits Tracker
Get The Latest Health & Wellness News
+ FREE Habits Tracker

Subscribe to our Wellness Wednesday newsletter

Includes New, Delicious Recipes Each Week!

+ BONUS: Get our FREE Healthy Habits Tracker to jumpstart your wellness journey.

We won’t spam or sell your info. Unsubscribe any time. 

Subscribe to our Wellness Wednesday Newsletter

Get our Weekly Newsletter of Wellness & Lifestyle Coaching Tips, Recipes, & How-To’s.

BONUS: You’ll also get our exclusive Daily 9 Healthy Habits Tracker to help kick off your wellness journey.

On the Blog

What We're Currently Talking About

9 Must-Do Healthy Habits to Prevent Burnout and Chronic Illness

9 Micro-Habits to Prevent Burnout & Illness

Here are the nine must-do diet & lifestyle habits scientifically-proven to help prevent burnout, inflammation, chronic illness, and disease.

Photo by Porapak Apichodilok from Pexels

World Health Day 2021: The Power of Prevention

Today is World Health Day 2021. This year’s theme is all about Prevention. Let’s talk about six crucial habits that will help you prevent disease and lead a long and healthy life.

Photo by ELEVATE from Pexels

The Power of Laughter

With April Fool’s Day around the corner, we’re exploring the power of laughter and its effect on our bodies and minds. Is laughter the best medicine?

WFPB Vegan Black Bean Protein Brownies

Black Bean Protein Brownies (WFPB, Vegan)

Remove the guilt with these WFPB Vegan Black Bean Protein Brownies that are sure to delight. Perfect for dessert, brunch, or a decadent snack.

This page may contain affiliate links. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com.

The products and services that we write about are ones that we like / personally use / recommend and we do not accept advertising dollars to share these specific products or services in our blog; however, we may receive compensation from Amazon at no additional cost to you if you chose to purchase these products using our links.

One Degree Health & Founder As Seen and Heard In

The-Denver-Post
Mind-Body-Radio
5280-Magazine
The-Denver-Post
Mind-Body-Radio
5280-Magazine
Trouvaille-Minnesota
Fearless-And-Fit-Womens-Wellness-Retreat
SecondActWomen-BizLifeCon