New Year’s has come and gone, bringing thousands of determined resolution-makers to the inevitable decision to give up sugar, carbs, red meat, dairy, alcohol, severely cut calories, and other similar total deprivation plans. The sad truth, is that by the time this article is published, almost all will have given up a little bit or entirely on their stated resolutions.
Is it smart to set a goal that involves making positive changes to your life? Absolutely. Is it healthy to set a goal that will be a serious challenge and force critical thinking at every turn? Sure. Is it an effective tool for long term wellness? Absolutely not. Drastic moves like eliminating certain ingredients or certain food groups can often backfire and result in a super-size craving for that thing you have given up. The idea of “giving things up” once per year then watching those things inevitably creep back into your diet is not a very good plan. Here is a better plan: Reject Resolutions.
Instead, knowing that you never last longer than a month before sliding back into your old ways, make smaller monthly goals. Make them compound month over month if you are really on a mission to better your health! Adjusting to smaller changes is much easier and more sustainable in the long term than wholesale massive changes. Make a calendar of the twelve small changes you will make throughout the year, and which you will tackle at the beginning of each month, and success will be much closer than you ever imagined. Just think, if only half of your goals stick with you, that’s six big improvements to your lifestyle!
Some easy goals for monthly add ons:
- Drink two full glasses of water at every meal
- Learn to make a healthy breakfast casserole that you can heat up in pieces throughout the week
- Try one new class format at the gym and participate in it once a week for a full month
- Add just a quarter mile to every run three times per week
- Take a 10 minute walk after lunch every day- regardless of the weather
- Keep a detailed food journal every night
- Learn to meditate and practice every Sunday night before bed for 10 minutes
- Learn deep breathing and practice every weekday morning before getting in the shower
- Set up a consultation with a Personal Trainer to learn how to stretch properly
- Order club soda as a first drink at the bar when out with friends- every time
To schedule a free consultation with a Certified Personal Trainer to set some nutrition and exercise goals you can really stick to, email firstname.lastname@example.org