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  • Writer's pictureAndrea Bari Levine

Monitor to Modify

Timothy Ferriss, author of The 4-Hour Body, wisely wrote that "[c]onsistent tracking, even if you have no knowledge of fat-loss or exercise, will often beat advice from world-class trainers." I personally experienced the magic of monitoring after recognizing how dehydrated I was earlier this year.

Pre-Covid I was always on the move and drinking from a reusable water bottle. But once I started spending all my days in one place, I switched to drinking from glasses. After several months of this, I started waking up in the middle of the night desperate for water, body lotion, eye drops and anything else that moisturized. Eager for a good night's sleep, I bought myself a new 32oz water bottle with markers every 8oz. Though I did not have a specific goal in mind, I immediately started drinking more water than before and sleeping through the night. The mere act of knowing how much I was drinking was enough to increase how much I was drinking. And I am feeling much better for it.

Even if hydration is not an issue, you can still use tracking to your advantage. If you desire to eat healthier, start with tracking your current diet in an app, on paper, or by taking photos of all your meals and snacks. If a lack of activities has meant an increase in alcohol, try lining up all the cans of beer or bottles of wine you drink in a week before tossing them in the recycling. And if you're prone to snacking, switch to portion-controlled packages so you know when you've eaten a serving (even if you reach for a second).

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