Everybody has made resolutions that lasted only a week or two. It’s true that most New Year’s resolutions have a short shelf life, with the average one kept until February 1, just 32 days after it was established. In fact, 68% of Americans said they quit their resolutions even sooner than that. So how do you make a resolution and stick with it? What are resolutions that really work? Sure, we’re past New Year’s Day, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start fresh and make a resolution to make your life better right now.
Start with something small and build on it.
Resolutions are about eliminating bad habits and starting beneficial ones. You notice the word habit. That’s important. You didn’t just wake up one morning and notice you gained a large amount of weight overnight or had all your muscle turn to flab. It took time and several bad habits for that to happen. Make one small change, either in your activity level and diet. Focus on it until it becomes a habit, which may take a couple of months. Make it as simple as substituting water for soft drinks or coffee—or at least to start with—for all the coffee and soft drinks but one during each day.
Look for ways to walk more and increase your activity level.
A sedentary lifestyle doesn’t change overnight without you focusing on changing it. Set a goal to take a walk every day. Try to get in 30 minutes, whether it’s a 30-minute walk or three 10-minute ones. You may already have a habit established every evening that involves watching videos, television or gaming. Find a way to make it more active. For instance, before you settle in, do a plank and hold for as long as possible. During commercials on television, do jumping jacks. Get the whole family to do them with you for added fun. Seriously, everyone will whine and complain, but keep at them and you’re sure to swing them over to your side. It could be a new family tradition that benefits everyone.
Learn to change how quickly you do things.
Are you a procrastinator until it comes to eating sugary treats? Use that talent to your benefit. Push yourself to do ten jumping jacks immediately, but start to procrastinate when it comes to sugary treats. If you mess up and eat something sugary, forgive yourself and start again. It doesn’t help you in any way to chronically condemn yourself. In fact, that’s a bad habit that you also should resolve to change. If you don’t like yourself, why would you want to do anything that makes you healthier?
- If cutting out added sugar is one of your goals, start first by cutting out sweet treats, such as candy or baked goods, then focus on food with added sugar once it becomes a habit. It’s easier if you have fresh fruits and vegetables ready as a snack.
- Carry water with you at all times if you’re making dietary changes. When you feel like eating or drinking something sweet, take a large gulp of water or two to quell your appetite.
- Create a go-to list that starts with your initial goal and builds to the ultimate goal. Once you’re sure you’ve conquered one habit, move on to the next goal on the list. When you have a plan of action, it makes change easier.
- If you want an option that’s even easier, come into Habitat Health and Fitness for a free trial session. We’ll create the program for you, then all you have to resolve to do is show up and do it.
For more information, contact us today at Habitat Health & Fitness