Free printable self care and wellness trackers

Hi again everyone,

So I’m not sure about you, but every so often I get in a real rut with life. I go from being super hyped and excited to chase goals and feeling amazing, to struggling to get out of bed and refusing to leave the house because my confidence is so low, all within the same week. It’s at times like these were I usually get frustrated with myself – I feel like I’ve hit a wall either with my mental or physical health, and I want to PLAN TO CHANGE.

The only problem with my usual plans is I usually come up with ways to track progress that requires way too much effort, and then feel worse afterwards for giving up after a week. Everyone is tracking everything these days – calories, macros, steps, weight, measurements, moods – with hundreds of different apps to juggle. So I thought I’d do it the old fashioned way and make some printable self care and wellness trackers, where everything is all in one place and moods are easily comparable to daily activities or foods consumed.

Here’s what is included:

Page one: Self care planner

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Here you can write down ways of self care that you would like to practice daily, weekly and monthly. For example, I’d like to get into the habit of meditating daily and drinking 2 litres of water daily. I’d like to have a face mask and exfoliate once a week, and once a month have a hair cut or get my nails done. This is for YOU to plan your treats and make sure you’re getting the self care you deserve!

Page two: Daily self care tracker

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I’m looking forward to using this one – I think it’ll be a great tool to develop healthy habits. Some of my goals will be things like ‘morning run’, ‘waking up before 6.30am’, ‘meditation’, ‘no tech day’, ‘read for 1 hour’ and so on. Of course some things will prioritise over others, and the idea isn’t to do as many things as possible – but rather a good way to build on healthy habits and become more aware of how your activities influence your mood. Speaking of…

Page three: Health & mood tracker

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For me personally, I’ll be tracking things like anxiety and bloating, low moods and PMS type symptoms. But anything you struggle with, write it down. You may find you see a positive change once you improve your nutrition and fitness, and be able to link good mood days to certain self care activities, foods or workouts.

Page four: Food & fitness tracker

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Food and fitness is an important part of my life. I’m an active person and I’m generally healthy with my food. But again, this is for you to develop healthy habits. I’ll be tracking things like yoga practice, raw and whole food consumption, ‘treat’ food consumption, sugar consumption, training, stretching and so on.

PLEASE do not fall into the trap of feeling guilty if you begin to notice negative patterns in your trackers.

These are here to help you and make you more aware in a quick and easy way. If you start to feel guilt for breaking a 4 day yoga or healthy eating streak, you’re in it for the wrong reasons. It is to help and motivate you to develop and grow, and practice acts of self love and care. You cannot grow through self hate, so maybe have that as a goal – to start working on that negative voice in your head.

You don’t have to use them all of course – you may find that one is enough and you want to focus on one aspect of your well-being.

Regardless of how you use your trackers, I hope you find them useful and I’ve given you some inspiration. If you have any questions or suggestions for future resources, let me know. I’m considering coming up for one for IBS/food intolerance tracking. What do you guys think?

Don’t forget, if you print these out and use them don’t forget to share them on instagram and tag me so I can see: @mind_body_millie !

Download your free self care and wellness trackers here

Enjoy!

Millie

Reverse dieting – one week in

Tomorrow is day 7 so I’ll have reached the one week mark for this whole clean eating malarky! Only 7 more weeks to go…heh…heh… 

For those who are following me on Snapchat/Insta, you may have guessed that my diet/gym regime has had a bit of an uphaul recently.

I mean, I was on my own little mission anyway (See my mind, body, soul 80 day challenge), but also decided to enlist the guidance of online personal trainer, Lukas Duncan, to give me a bit of a kick up the butt diet-wise, to get myself body confident for summer.

My problem is, although I’m pretty clued up about nutrition, I also am a big believer in ‘treat yo-self’ and have always rolled my eyes when people won’t eat something nutritionally good for them when they’re hungry, because ‘it doesn’t fit their macros.’

Now I’m one of those people! I’m meal prepping (which I did a bit before anyway but never to this scale) and weighing everything I eat down to the last gram. I figured I would give it a go for 8 weeks. But this is seriously ‘clean’ eating.

And although I’m on a ‘diet’, which I consider to be pretty restrictive in the sense of measuring macros and strict eating times/portions, I’m not hungry. I’m actually eating more than I have for ages – I’m up 300 calories a day, and most days I can’t even use up all my calories.

Here’s what a general day looks like:

Day 1: was pretty easy. I was motivated. I was doing this. Gym in the afternoon.

Day 2: was a little more annoying, purely because I felt like I’d spent the majority of my afternoon meal prepping and was not happy about this. Also felt like I needed a wee nap in the afternoon.

Day 3: could not wake up. Just couldn’t. I tried to have a black coffee but I HATE black coffee so took two sips and didn’t bother with the rest. Almost threw my Tupperware pot against the wall at work. Didn’t feel able to work until about 12.30pm. Went to the gym that night. Passed out in bed.

Day 4: seriously tired and slight headache all day. Although not as tired as day 3. BUT as I was eating my 3rd bit of dried chicken and broccoli that day I did want to cry and run to get some chocolate. Possibly the most down I’ve felt the entire process so far. Went to bed for 8pm. Good night sleep.

Day 5: woke up naturally at 6.30am and stayed awake all day. No usual ‘slump’ around 2/3pm that I usually get. Also not craving sugar as much. Lots of energy in the evenings after work – cleaned the whole house before going to the gym in the evening. Meal prepping does have it’s perks when it means you rarely have to cook dinner as it’s already done – free’s up some evening time. Oh, and had a bit of a peanut butter binge in the evening before bed.

Day 6, today: Despite not sleeping that great, I woke up again at 6.30am and stayed awake all day, no brain fog. Even motivated enough to write a blog post! Muscle aches almost everywhere on my body, but I have a rest day this evening before arms tomorrow.

If one thing is clear, is that cutting out refined sugars/carbs/gluten/dairy has done wonders for my gut already. That’s what’s keeping me motivated – the fact that I haven’t gone this long without being bloated/uncomfortable since…I can’t even remember.

Also thinking about it, I do feel considerably less anxious and more ‘on top’ of things. But that may fade the longer I go without chocolate!

Watch this space! No doubt I’ll post a progress photo soon and reassure myself that I can do this!! for 7 more weeks (and 1 day)!

90 days of (super duper) mind, body and me

A couple of summers ago, I decided I needed a bit of a lifestyle change. I decided that instead of trying to mindlessly follow some new diet or ‘fad’, I would learn all I could about what it meant to be healthy, and make as much a physical change I could, in 80 days. I didn’t look at the scales. I would only measure my progress by photos, and by my attitude towards myself (levels of self love). This led to a really positive change in my attitude towards life and what it meant to be healthy. Rather than restricting myself and then feeling temped with all the things I couldn’t do or eat, I’d look at all food I COULD eat and get excited about the idea of how healthy and good for me it was. Instead of seeing treats as a bad thing, I stuck to about an 80%/20% rule, and just decided that for the most part, I didn’t want to eat unhealthily anymore, and that a healthy change needed to come from self love and self respect, not from self hate.

Namaste

As motivation and inspiration (or life) has it’s ups and downs, sometimes it’s impossible to stick to such a positive mentality for a super long period of time (especially with anxiety or any other mental health problems you may be facing). Since that summer, I have pretty much stuck to my 80% 20% rule of good vs ‘bad’ food, and worked out on and off – sometimes for 4 days a week for a few weeks at a time, and then go through phases of maybe one workout once or twice a month.

But I am a personal growth junkie. I like to think I’m quite healthy now, and I’ve been making improvements with becoming more mindful and trying to reduce my day-to-day anxiety.

After some thought over the past couple of days, I’ve decided that since the first one worked so well, I’ll do a similar challenge to before – a 90 day mind, body and soul challenge. So instead of just looking to improve my body image (that will just be a great added bonus) I want to become aware of my mind and the noise it creates, and become skilled in how I manage myself. I want to feel myself grow within myself – to become more mindful, effectively manage my anxiety, and develop skills to become more self-disciplined.

Some ways I’ll do this, are:

  • Exercise 4 days a week. I find exercise, especially weight training, really helps me relieve stress. Because I work at a desk for the most part of my day, I hold a lot of tension in my hips and shoulders.
  • Yoga.
  • Reading – reading about mindfulness, emotions, and just reading for pleasure
  • Creativity – prioritising painting, writing and reading over technology (and sticking with it even though I may feel impatient with myself for ‘not being creative enough’)
  • Tech-tox …spending little to no time online apart from at work and to write my blog (and the occasional Instagram post (follow me if you like! I use Insta mainly for watching other yogi’s flows or workouts for inspiration and posting about health/fitness/mindfulness)
  • Slowly move towards a largely plant based diet and experiment with more plant based foods and recipes ( I always suffer with bloating which really impacts my self confidence and makes me look about 4 months pregnant, so it will be nice to see the difference I feel by learning more about and sorting out my nutrition!)
  • Meditation

90 days from now is the 3rd June. I’m excited to track my progress – physically and mentally!

Has anyone else done anything similar to this? What do you do to unwind and focus on your well being?

Thanks for reading, till next time….xxxx

Week 3 with no phone (and I’m doing okay)

HEY HEY!

It feels a bit like forever since I’ve written. Couple of reasons for that – firstly, I’ve prioritised any time to Yoga (Namaste!). Secondly, my phone has completely broken and I had no easy access to my blog. At the end of a day sat at a desk, I kinda like coming home and doing some yoga or getting creative, rather than sitting down with my laptop to face another screen again.

I would be lying if I said I didn’t miss my phone. BUT at the same time, I’ve noticed I’m really in no rush to get it fixed. It broke about three weeks ago, and even though the bag was sent to me at the start of this week so I can send it off to them, it’s Friday tomorrow and I still haven’t made it a priority. I don’t miss it. I don’t miss the impulsive nature towards things that having a smartphone ‘makes’ me exhibit – feeling the need to have it nearby at all times, notifications that ping and buzz to distract me for another 10 minutes and make me feel important for about 2 seconds. Obsession about what I’ll be posting to attract more followers, what’s going on in the world that I might miss, about how I should ‘really take a photo of this for snapchat/instagram/facebook.’

I feel like my phone breaking gave me a bit of a detox I need to just step away from that obsession. Because it was an obsession. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not tech-free or avoiding social media. In fact I probably log into Facebook more now than I did before (before, Instagram was my main obsession!) because if people want to contact me it’s now it has to through Facebook or email. BUT now the apps I do have are on the iPad, and it’s at home, usually in one place most of the time. I don’t wake up and check my emails first thing, I don’t scroll through social media feeds for hours on my lunch break, I don’t stop talking to my friend over dinner to tag her in a Facebook post or take a Snapchat photo. I make a conscious decision every time I use tech now – there’s a reason behind my action, not just impulse stemmed from obsession, when we find ourselves just scrolling feeds for no real reason than something to do,  something to distract us from what’s going on (it’s the release of dopamine that makes social media use so addictive – the hormone release is linked to the rewards and pleasure centre of your brain, and you get a hit every time you hear a ping and see a like or a new follower. It’s highly addictive!). Even though I do still use social media, it’s now very little and if I want to talk to someone or share something now, I’m doing it mindfully, rather than wasting my day away looking at ‘whats going on in the world’, (but actually missing what’s going on in my world) and watching the lives of people I don’t actually ever really talk to (or even know!)

I can feel the change. In the first couple of days I felt naked without my phone whilst out and about (that moment of panic when you reach for your pocket and it isn’t there!) but there’s actually only been one time in the past 3 weeks where I thought, ‘Actually, having a phone right now would be pretty useful’, and that was when I was in London having to find my way from a meeting to a station. But I still managed it – by asking people for directions! (the good ol’ fashion talking to people!). Instead of looking down at the screen to guide me, I became more mindful in my walk, people watching, asking for directions, watching for signs. It was actually kinda nice. I’ve realised I’ve become less anxious in general without a phone – not only is the anxiety of losing it gone, the anxiety of everything that comes with having numerous social media profiles has subsided.

By week 3, the things I miss are my music and my camera! I will probably get it sent off tomorrow. Maybe. Might wait till Monday!

In other news – it’s a long weekend off for me and Simon! It’s finally SPRING, it was a beautiful day, and we went to Canterbury to do some shopping and have some lunch. We were only out about 4 hours but apparently that was more than enough for me – I came home and had an hour long nap! Basically, it was a great day off. And tomorrow is my BIRTHDAY! 25, holy cow. I’m spending the day with Simon, and then we are having friends over in the evening and he’s cooking us all a lovely meal.Then we are off to Essex at the weekend!

Till next time folks – I want to write a yoga update within the next couple of days!

Yoga practice day 10

I’ve been practicing yoga every day for the past ten days at home, with the aim to do 30 days in a row. I honestly thought I’d find it really boring and unchallenging after weight training, and although some days have been really relaxed, day 9 had me on a sweaty heap on the floor! 

BUT I managed to do a crows pose a couple of days ago, for the first time ever! And actually held it for a good few seconds! I have rubbish upper body strength, all my strength is in my legs, so I was really happy I managed this. I think what made it even better was that because I’m not in a hurry to ‘get to the next move’ or whatever, I wasn’t expecting it. I’m trying to have a relaxed attitude to developing my my yoga practice. 
The most difficult day so far has actually been the one that was the least physically challenging… For that exact reason! Because it was so slow and relaxed, I found myself thinking ‘come on, come on… Onto the next one already!’ and getting impatient, rather than relaxing and becoming completely absorbed in the moment. Something to work on! Watch this space! 

In other news, I’m reading a book at the mo called ‘Feel the fear and do it anyway’ by Susan Jeffers. 

I’m really really loving it – its a little ‘wishy washy’ from a scientific point of view, but I think that occasionally there’s nothing wrong with some OTT self help books to give you your daily pep talk! I’m going to start introducing a morning ‘positive mindset’ mediation practice and see what a difference it makes to my day! 

I love passages like that! As I’m reading I’m making notes of the ideas and ways to face fears. It’s only a fear for as long as you let it be 💙

Bikram Yoga: What is it, and why should you try it this year?

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Hi everyone!

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If you follow me on social media, you’ve probably seen this past week has been super hectic for me! I’ve been stressed, tired and felt like I’ve had no time for SLA. I’m so so glad it’s Friday! Hellooooo weekend!

One massive mood booster for me this week was when I received an email from the lovely Amy Mia Goldsmith, from Melbourne in Australia. She asked whether or not I was open to giving a couple of her blog pieces a home on SLA – I was over the moon!

 A biology graduate from Melbourne and yoga enthusiast, Amy is also a mum with a passion for healthy living. She has a degree in nutrition, and her goal is to teach people to live a healthy, happy life. She loves to write and is a contributor to several lifestyle blogs (including mine now, eeek!).

I must admit that until I’ve always struggled with two things: flexibility and cardio. I’m getting a lot better with cardio now, so the next step for me would be to take on yoga! After reading Amy’s post, I’m now determined to try Bikram yoga, and plan on trying it for the first time this weekend!

I think you’ll all find this post super helpful if you’ve been thinking about trying yoga and want to know more about the health benefits.

Enjoy!


Popularized somewhere in the early 70s, Bikram Yoga or sometimes referred to as Hot Yoga, represents a type of traditional hatha yoga, with only one minor difference – this type of yoga is practiced in a room heated to 40°C with a humidity of 40%. Some of the major health benefits include improved flexibility and deadlift strength and release of toxins from the body. Other than these, this type of yoga can greatly benefit you in other spheres of life as well, and this is why you should try it this year:

Flexibility

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Perhaps the main focus of yoga in general is to improve one’s flexibility. When it comes to hot yoga, this system of exercising allows you to push your limits far beyond your normal capacities. This is because the hot temperatures allow your body to warm up nice and quickly, which gives you the opportunity to stretch your body muscles more and allow you to go much deeper when practicing certain postures in comparison to other yoga routines. Also, practicing Bikram yoga regularly will improve your endurance, so it will be much easier to push your limits even further. It is important to find suitable equipment when indulging in these types of exercising, something like Ryderwear sportswear, which allows you to feel comfortable and move freely while working out.

Cardio

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Certain positions which are typical for hot yoga allow you to burn as many calories as you would burn when indulging in some high-impact exercising like running. There are some exercises that double your heart rate and also stretch your heart muscles, increasing the heart rate until you release the posture. Also, the additional heat in the room stimulates your metabolism so you are burning more calories than usual. This means that this type of yoga can certainly be compared to a cardiovascular workout.

Focus

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Not only does hot yoga count as a physical workout, it also doubles as a mental exercise as well. It is because the standard Bikram yoga class consist of the same 26 postures and about two breathing exercises. This means that there is a clear consistency when it comes to exercising, which allows your brain to focus more than before. Being able to fixate your mind on a certain position, gives you more motivation and determination to push yourself and test your limits, resulting in outstanding outcomes.

Detox

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Most doctors, professional trainers and nutritionists recommend indulging in certain physical activity in correlation with a balanced diet in order to cleanse your body. This is because exercising allows you to sweat out all the harmful toxins that have piled up in your body. In hot yoga, the room temperature increases the ability to detox your muscles, glands and organs. What is important to keep in mind is not to wipe away your sweat, as it helps your body maintain normal body temperature. This is especially important in Bikram Yoga, as the temperature changes are quite drastic.

Healing

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In the end, the true purpose of yoga is healing both the body and the mind. Indulging in hot yoga for about 3 times a week can greatly help you heal some previous injuries, back pains, posture problems, but it can also reduce symptoms of diabetes, asthma, obesity and high blood pressure. Another great benefit of yoga is that it relaxes the mind and serves as a great tool against depression, anxiety and similar mental and emotional conditions.

Because of its great benefits, Bikram Yoga is practiced all around the world by people who wish to maintain a healthier lifestyle, improve their physical abilities and become more relaxed and serene. Of course, this type of yoga carries some risks with it, because of the high temperatures and it is important to always be sure of your limitations and not push yourself beyond your abilities.


If you enjoyed Amy’s post, you can contact her or give her a follow on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.