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10 Steps to a Healthier, Leaner & Stronger You

10 Steps to a Healthier, Leaner & Stronger You

General Overview

We’ve all been there.  Looking to lose some extra weight from the holidays, or from having a baby, or just trying to get stronger?  Have you tried fad diets, the latest exercise program, and still you don’t get the results you were promised?  Or maybe you got the results but they were temporary at best.  The problem is likely that the program is not sustainable long term, or it didn’t address all the aspects affecting your health.  A healthy body naturally carries less fat and more muscle.  And who doesn’t want that!?!

At Propello Life, we believe in natural, holistic solutions that can be implemented into your lifestyle so that the changes you make are sustainable and long lasting.  That means, once the weight is off, it is off for good.  Unless you decide to go back to your old habits, of course!

Without getting into too much of the science, your body composition (fat to lean mass ratio) is largely regulated by hormones.  Your genetics also play a huge role; but that is a topic for another blog!  Getting the correct hormones to be expressed is the key to a healthier, leaner, and stronger body.  Through our research and experience, we have created 10 simple steps that address the complex body functions regulating what hormones are expressed leading to the body you have always wanted.

What you eat impacts your hormones.

What exercises you do and the intensity level impacts your hormones.

How much sleep you get impacts your hormones.

The stress in your life impacts your hormones. 

It is a complex puzzle of interconnected pieces with the result being either movement towards better health or not.  And your diet has the largest impact.

The steps below will help you achieve your short-term health goals, but they are far more than that.  These steps are meant to become your new way of eating, exercising, sleeping, and relieving stress.  The goal is to use these steps until they become habit.  Only after these steps become part of your life, will you be free to stop worrying about your weight and start enjoying the energy, well being, and happiness that comes from being healthier, leaner, and stronger.


10 Steps to a Healthier, Leaner & Stronger You 

  1. Plan your meals

  2. You are what you eat

  3. Choose your drinks carefully

  4. Substitute a healthier option: Eat this; not that

  5. Address vitamin & mineral deficiencies

  6. Snack wisely

  7. Manage your stress

  8. Sleep is precious

  9. Exercise is more than calories burned

  10. Treat yourself each week


More details about the 10 Steps

Plan your meals

  • Keep it simple & eat healthy when no one is looking!
  • Example of a healthy day:
    • Breakfast: Eat a Green Smoothie for Breakfast every morning
      • One serving of Propello Life protein powder (16-21 grams)
      • 4 pieces of frozen pineapple
      • 1 small knob of ginger (peeled)
      • 1 cup of spinach
      • 10 ounces of water, coconut milk, or almond milk
      • Blend until smooth
    • Lunch: Eat a salad with grilled chicken or fish (regular dressing is better than low fat/calories, vinaigrettes are better than creamy). Use leftovers from last night’s dinner and throw it on top of some greens to keep it easy!
    • Dinner: Eat a lean protein, veggies, and a complex carbohydrate (quinoa, sweet potato, brown rice, etc…) for dinner. Start with a side salad; veggies should cover more than half your plate.

You are what you eat

  • Eat as pure and healthy as you want to be – eat only food and drinks that occur in nature (whole foods). These foods have the highest nutritional value and will provide the majority of vitamins & minerals your body needs naturally.
  • Limit the processing your foods goes through; long nutrition labels are highly processed. Shop the outside of your grocery store for produce and meats, leave the processed food in the middle on the shelves and out of your cart.
  • Eliminate all fried foods from your diet for the first 30 days; after that only indulge occasionally
  • Eliminate all bread from your diet (including whole grains) for the first 30 days; after that slowly bring back in to see how your body responds.
  • Avoid fast food
  • Food is either fuel or a treat; rarely is it both

Choose your drinks carefully

  • Water – drink it a lot!!!
  • Black coffee & unsweetened tea are good – hold the cream, sugar, artificial sweetener, etc..
  • Propello Life Aminos (how could we leave this favorite out?!) and Pre-Workout
  • Zero calorie drinks & diet drinks are a no-no. Artificial sweeteners are worse than regular sugar.
  • Limit (3/week) or eliminate alcohol
  • Avoid soda – diet soda is not okay either

Substitute a healthier option: Eat This; Not That

  • Protein: the less legs the better (fish, chicken, real turkey better than beef or pork)
  • Veggies: vegetables should make up 50% or more of your lunch and dinner – instead of french fries
    • The more color the better - Eat the rainbow!!!
    • Best: Raw veggies, Better: steamed or lightly cooked, Good: cooked
  • Carbohydrates: quinoa, sweet potatoes, whole grains, rice instead of french fries, pasta, or white bread
  • Fat: substitute raw coconut oil, grass-fed organic butter, or EVOO in place of vegetable or canola oils, margarine or non-organic butter. Healthy fats (avocados, coconut oil, EVOO, nuts and beans) are actually essential to you losing weight, but non-healthy fats (donuts, cupcakes, vegetable oil, etc.) are not.
  • Don’t use low fat dressings – use the regular stuff; just less of it.  Good balsamic vinaigrette recipe: ½ c EVOO, ¼ c balsamic vinegar, 3 T honey
  • Sweets – if you are craving sweets, eat a piece of fruit or a small piece of quality dark chocolate instead of a dessert (just don’t go hog wild with the fruit or chocolate, either!)
  • Try to cook at home instead of eating out as much as possible – you never know how they cook your food, and most likely it’s not how you would at home. Salads are a safer option when dining out.

Address vitamin & mineral deficiencies

  • Get a blood test to baseline your numbers
  • Talk with a trusted doctor or health care professional about deficiencies and how to resolve them

Snack wisely 

  • Mindless eating will sabotage your efforts
  • Eat a piece of fruit if you are craving sugar – apples and berries are a great option
  • Eat nuts or cottage cheese if you are hungry
  • Make a Propello Life protein shake
  • Drink a glass of ice water with lemon
  • Try to understand what triggers your hunger – is it stress, boredom, etc… then come up with healthier responses to these emotional triggers

Manage your stress

  • Find an activity that becomes an outlet for your stress (walking, yoga, exercising, stretching, running, meditation, etc…)
  • Talk with someone you trust
  • Write it down in a journal
  • Just don’t bottle it up and let it fester!

Sleep is precious:

  • Get 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep per night
  • Don’t watch TV or read in your bed. There are only two things you should do in your bed: sleep and….well you know the other ;)
  • Sleep deprivation leads to:
    • Increased Cortisol levels – stress hormone
    • Increased Ghrelin levels – hunger hormone that tells you to eat
    • Lowered Leptin levels – fullness hormone that tells you to stop eating; also plays a role in burning fat as fuel
  • Check out our blog post: The Importance of Sleep on Your Health for more details

Exercise is more than calories burned

  • Lift weights!!!
    • There are 5 main movements you need to train Push, Pull, Hinge, Carry, & Squat
      • Push: push-up (put your hands on a chair or stairs if you can’t do regular push-ups; not on your knees!), bench, etc…
      • Pull: pull-ups, chin-ups, rows
      • Hinge: Deadlift variations
      • Carry: farmer carry variations
      • Squat: Lunge & squat variations
    • Girls won’t get big doing this!
    • Guys will!
    • High Intensity is best: 30 minutes of high intensity
      • warm up for 10-15 minutes
      • 30 min of high intensity exercise
      • 10 minutes to cool down and stretch
    • At home option: Buy a TRX to get an entire body weight workout for about $100 and do it at your house
    • Form Matters: Master your own body weight first, then add weight!
    • Exercising builds your lean muscle mass – leading to a higher resting metabolism!!!
    • Exercising lowers your insulin response to food; insulin is a storage hormone (insulin is the hormone that tells your body to store excess glycogen (digested sugar and breads) as fat)
      • A lower insulin response leads to less of what you eat being stored as fat. This is a good thing!
    • Calories burned during your workout are great, but the calories your burn the other 23 hours are more impactful!

Treat yourself each week

  • You should aim for 3 treat meals each week. Eat what you want with those meals. Try to keep it to one day if possible.
  • Celebrate your progress to a new you and a new way of eating for the rest of your life. Once you get going, you will be proud of yourself!

 Final Thoughts

Improving your health is a journey; a journey only you can take.  Today is the first day towards a better, healthier you.  Many small changes made over time lead to great changes months and years from now.  Changing the way you eat, exercise, sleep, and relieve stress is a big deal and won’t be easy every day.  Accept that you will make some wrong decisions; this is okay and normal.  Follow mistakes with good choices.  Over time you will find yourself making more and more good choices.

I know it would be great to take a magic pill or to follow a paint by numbers plan and instantly have the healthier, leaner, and stronger body you want.  This just isn’t reality.  Everyone is different, and no single solution will work for everyone.  That is why the steps above are not called rules.  Experiment and try them.  Listen to your body, your energy, and your health.  Take ownership of your health.  Oh...and one last thought – stop standing on a scale to measure your weight.  This is a meaningless number.






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