I managed to get a little healthier in 2013 than I was in 2012. I didn’t make any drastic changes because I knew I couldn’t stick with them. Instead, I chose to change one small thing at a time to slowly make some changes toward a healthier lifestyle. I’ve compiled a list of things that I did last year to make my family’s life a little healthier.

  • Date night

    Having a regular date night with my husband helped us to have a healthier relationship. It seemed we were always trying to find time before we went to bed to talk, but it rarely ever happened, because we were too tired. With both of us working and the kids’ extracurricular activities, we were constantly on the go. We finally had to force ourselves to make time for each other. No we don’t get a whole evening out that often, but almost every week, we get an hour or so to enjoy each other’s company at a local coffee shop.

  • Regular exercise

    This was probably the hardest change to make and stick with for a few reasons. When you have children, it’s hard to find the time to be alone so you can sneak in a work out, or sneak away for one. It’s hard to keep motivated, especially if you’re trying to do it on your own without the help of a partner. I’m not going to lie, it really sucked at first. Forcing myself to get on the treadmill day after day in the winter months was hard, but by the time spring came, I was in good enough shape to go for a couple mile run, and enjoy the great outdoors while doing it.

  • Food swap

    I had always bought white breads and pastas for my family, but I decided that it was time to switch to whole wheat. My kids did complain a little at first, but if it’s the only thing in the house they will eat it and they will get used to the taste. We’ve all grown accustomed to the taste, and it’s nice to know that we are getting more nutrients like vitamin E, fatty acids and magnesium, that we weren’t getting before.

  • Get outside

    I’ve always struggled with this. I love being inside, especially during the winter. However, I found that if I forced myself to go outside, even for just 30 minutes, my mood improved and I always ended up getting some sort of exercise. Whether it was chasing the kids around, playing fetch with the dog or pulling weeds, just getting a little fresh air made a big difference.