Healthy living doesnt start with Crossfit. It starts in the kitchen. “>

Have you heard the adage you cant out-exercise a bad diet?

What you eat matters. It matters so much that if you want to start the journey towards creating a healthier youperhaps losing weight or simply feeling better overall I recommend throwing all of your focus on eating: changing what you eat, when you eat, with whom you eat, how you eat, how frequently you eat, where you eat, how late you eat, and how fast you eat.

Screw going to the gym. Health starts in the kitchen.

Spend the time and dollars you would working out instead reading books about cooking, doing daily or weekly grocery shopping, learning as much as you possibly can about foodand, of course, practicing the art of cooking as much as possible.

I call it the cookery reformation, and recommend sticking to it for at least two months. It takes an average of 66 days to form a habit according to this study from the University College of London.

How does this translate? Every meal you eat for two months, save one day a week, should be made by you in your kitchen.

You dont know how to cook or you just dont have time to cook? I dont buy it. This self-denial of your abilities or a poor time management skillset is the crux of your problems.

If you can you navigate Netflix every night, waste hours on Grindr during the week, or swipe right while youre at the office, you can probably figure out how to boil water and add potatoes, pasta, yams, or zucchini.

I also have full faith that f you can navigate Snapchat, you can figure out how to watch a few Youtube videos (heres a video of 91-year-old Clara who cooks meals from the Great Depression) and teach yourself to cook. Or better yet, ask someone you know who can cooka friend, a cousin, a neighbor, a co-workerto teach you a few healthy recipes. I bet this person will say yes.

Cooking is a primordial act. Its what separates us from all the rest. Its not going away anytime soon.

You dont even need an app to track what you eat. Stop wasting your time counting calories. No matter what food-tracking app you have on your smartphone or Fitbit gizmo you wear on your wrist, nothing can compete with spending time each day in the kitchen, teaching yourself how to cook food your grandparents ate during the depressionaka, real food.

Real food means it doesnt have a nutrition label. Think broccoli, fresh salad, cauliflower, zucchini, beets, chicken liver. Yep, its a total mystery how many calories youre eating of this stuffbut if its real food (and heavy on the vegetables), your body will know what to do with it.

Your journey to weight loss starts with you going home on a Monday evening, eating your last unhealthy meal while ordering a few cookbooks from Amazon, together with a cast iron skillet and Tupperware for the leftovers. These are the foundation for your cookery reformation.

Not sure what food books to order? Go with your gut. I recommend Googling good cook books, or checking out whats highly reviewed on Amazon. Order them used to save some cash (use it at the grocery store!).

Cookbooks are embellished forms of cookery passed down orally, generation to generation, by the working classes. Remember this the next time you grab that wooden spoon and get your cook on.

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In short, your journey to a healthier you starts with changing food habits. It has nothing to do with joining a CrossFit Box, tracking calories in a food app, exercising with a personal trainer, or ordering out healthy takeout (it doesnt exist). Your connection and relationship with food is important. It doesnt need to be glamorous on a weekday night. We are supposed to eat simply.

Treat yoself. Eat in courses, over time, and always at a table (with friends or family if possible). If no one is around, Alec Baldwins podcast Heres the Thing can make for a perfect date, especially the episode in which he interviews the great Carol Burnett.

Youll be surprised how full you get when laughing to a podcast or chatting with a friend about the day.

Welcome to step one of being a human being.

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