I’ve always been conscious of the example I set for my daughter, but now that she’s nearing the teenage years, I’m more aware than ever of the importance of teaching her healthy habits. And since she’s always watching me, it’s essential I make these healthy habits part of my daily lifestyle, too.
I’m not always good at sticking with all eight, but these tips are key to helping me look and feel my very best, both inside and out, regardless of age.
8 Tips for Looking & Feeling Your Best
ONE // Get Some Sleep
There’s a reason they call it beauty rest…and when you don’t get enough, it shows on your face in the form of bags and dark circles. Not to mention a cranky attitude, and foggy thinking. I’m guilty of working late, scrolling my phone, or binging shows into the wee-hours, but I always pay the price.
We all require a different amount of sleep, but you know when you’re not getting enough!
TWO // Drink Up
We’ve all heard it 1000 times, but staying hydrated boosts your metabolism, gives you more energy, aids in digestive health, and just makes your skin look better overall. I’ve found it helpful to keep a large water bottle with me, and aim to drink two before lunch, two before dinner, and one after dinner.
THREE // Eat Well
We certainly indulge in our share of pizza and tacos, but we stay fairly balanced the majority of the time. I don’t have the willpower to stick with limiting diets (like Keto or Whole30), and enjoy food too much to cut out entire food groups, so I practice moderation. If I know we’re going out to dinner, I’ll eat light during the day. Mr. SP and I often split meals when eating out, and I try not to eat after 8pm.
I get lots of questions about my diet and what I eat in a day, but it varies so much I’m hesitant to write a dedicated post! I don’t eliminate any one food (except soda, I never drink soda), but instead have smaller portions of everything. For instance, if I have a sweet tooth, I eat one or two squares of dark chocolate. Or if we order dessert out, I’ll eat just a couple of bites, instead of the whole thing. That way I’m not depriving myself, and I satisfy the craving.
Sugarplum Tip: Use smaller dinner plates at home to keep your portions in check. I always use a salad plate, and the full plate tricks my mind into thinking I have more than I do!
FOUR // Stay Active
Having dogs is huge in keeping us active, simply because they need to get out and run! Now that the days are longer, we go for walks as a family after dinner, or shoot hoops in the driveway…after spending all day in a classroom, it’s essential for the kids to get out, too!
But as I’ve gotten older, I realize the need for a more aggressive exercise program. My metabolism isn’t what it used to be, nor is my muscle tone, so I have to work harder. Even more important, is the stress relief that comes from actually breaking a sweat.
The key to sticking with an exercise program is finding the style that best fits your personality. For me, that’s a group class with someone telling me exactly what to do and when to stop. I also want to make the most of my workouts (I mean, if I have to wash my hair, I might as well make it worth it!), so I prefer fairly intense exercise classes.
We’ve been doing Orange Theory Fitness for about seven months, and it’s the only hour of my day when I’m not thinking about my To Do List or life’s responsibilities. It feels really good to do something just for myself, and the confidence that comes with feeling strong in your body is beautiful.
FIVE // Practice Good Skincare
At just 12-years-old, my daughter is already vigilant about washing and moisturizing her face, and never skips sunscreen! I can only imagine how beautifully her skin will age! Certainly not how I cared for my face growing up. #tanningbedregrets Last month I shared my Evening Skincare Routine, and had several of you mention you love NeoStrata products for their medical-grade ingredients. And then the following week I noticed them at my dermatologist’s office (get skin checks, ladies!).
So I asked my doctor about them and she recommended adding NeoStrata’s SKIN ACTIVE Tri-Therapy Lifting Serum to my routine. It is formulated with a triple anti-aging system to help plump the skin for a more lifted appearance, and smoothes skin with a Low Molecular Weight Hyaluronic Acid, while providing surface level hydration and exfoliation for increased luminosity. #signmeup
It’s thicker than any serum I’ve tried, and almost creates a sealed mask of product when I apply it. I use it at night with my other products, and have noticed more even skin tone and less evident lines around my eyes and mouth.
But the best skincare routine is one you’ll actually stick with…whether thats two products or 20!
Fun Fact: The doctors behind NeoStrata are the ones who discovered the anti-aging benefits of alpha-hydroxy acids, and revolutionized the treatment of aging skin!
SIX // Practice Self Care
As moms, wives, employees, friends….we’re pulled in a lot of directions. And guilt seems to go hand-in-hand with these roles when it comes to taking time for ourselves. But our happiness, and overall well-being, depends on self-care, as well. And a bubble bath doesn’t count if you’re making the next day’s To Do List or catching up on emails while soaking in the tub.
I’m talking about dedicating time for yourself, with the sole purpose of YOU! Maybe that’s an exercise class, a massage, or just sitting in your bedroom with the door locked (and wine #obviously) And honestly, I think you need to be totally unplugged, too.
Reading is one of my favorite pastimes, and something I’d gotten away from with life’s hectic pace. Plus, it always felt selfish to shut out my family and world around me to get lost in a book. But now I make an effort to get in bed earlier some nights, and just read! I’ve found it relaxes me, and gives my mind a chance to let go of the day. Plus, I sleep better, which goes back to the number one tip!
SEVEN // Family Fun Time
I love most every aspect of blogging, but it can also be very isolating. The majority of my time is spent behind a computer, working alone, so it’s easy to get up in my own head. And sometimes that’s a scary place to be! Making the effort to meet friends, or have family fun time, always recenters and reenergizes me.
And it doesn’t have to be elaborate plans, we play cards after dinner, shoot hoops, walk the dogs…basically we try to do as much together as a family as possible. We also make our home open and welcoming to our kid’s friends, so we have more time to be near them. Connecting with the people I love brings me so much joy.
EIGHT // Choose Joy & Find Gratitude
I know it’s cheesy and cliche, but I honestly think this is the most important thing in looking and feeling your best. Because joy is beautiful. But joy doesn’t always come easily or naturally. Some days it’s a struggle to find the joy, but when I focus on gratitude, it’s impossible not to see the blessings in my life.
I’m a huge believer in the power of positive thinking! Especially with my kids always watching me, I want them to see me looking for the good in people and situations.
That doesn’t mean I haven’t had my share of heartache and disappointment, but I choose to not let it control my life. And sometimes that means fake it ’til you make it!
I know this is just skimming the surface of tips, but they’re the keys to my own well-being, and what I’m teaching my daughter. I’d love to hear your tips and thoughts for how you look and feel your best. How do you ensure you get enough sleep and drink enough water? Have you tried NeoStrata? I know they have a passionate following, which are your favorite products?
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*Photos by the darling and talented Mary Summers. This post is created in collaboration with NeoStrata, but all tips, opinions and cheesy-grins are my own. Thank you for supporting Hi Sugarplum sponsors.*