Keeping Those New Years Resolutions
By Jenny Johnson- CC’s Staff
Keeping Those New Years Resolutions
“I’m going to eat healthy this year.” “My goal is to lose weight this year.” “I’m going to train for a half marathon this year.” “I’m going to stop smoking this year.”
Any of this sound familiar? Of course we all say it, and if not us, we all know someone close to us that has made one of these their New Year’s resolutions. Everyone starts strong – working out every day, drinking lots of water, eating healthy. But what happens by this point, now two weeks into the new year? Some are still going strong, but others have already slacked a bit on that plan or given it up completely. “Guess I’ll try again next year”, right? No way, Jose!
With any change in our healthy habits and way of living, the best thing we can do is start slow and use moderation. Maybe going to the gym for a couple hours, jogging, and lifting weights on January 1st wasn’t the best way to start. When you are fairly sedentary and your body isn’t used to all that physical activity at once, you’re going to pay for it for a few days. Hitting it hard and strong the first few days is only going to get you really sore and make it harder for you to keep going back on a regular basis. Not saying that all-over body soreness is bad – you should be at least a little sore – but straining or injuring yourself is not worth it. Here are some recommendations to make sure you have success with your New Year’s resolutions:
Start s l o w. When looking at a resolution that may be a fairly daunting task, try splitting it up into smaller goals that you attain throughout the year. When first starting out try doing what you would think is a pretty easy routine. Maybe its walking for 10 minutes and doing some light stretching. Over a few days or weeks, you can add in more cardio or weight training as your body allows. Goal is to exercise 7 days a week? Start by scheduling 2-3 days per week for a bit until that is routine for you. Goal is to eat healthier? Try replacing your dessert with a health snack like fruit or yogurt so the “diet” doesn’t seem like punishment.
Look at changing one behavior at a time. Eating healthier, drinking more water, and exercising daily are all great ideas, but they are not all going to happen at once. Failing in one area has been shown to decrease your motivation to continue with the rest of your plan. You will eventually get to changing all these behaviors, but small steps have been shown to work best.
Talk about it. Share your plan and goals with friends, family, or coworkers. Join an exercise class or support group, or just have an “accountability buddy” that has similar goals. This way you have more motivation to keep going (I mean who doesn’t like a little friendly competition) and its easier than going at it alone. Someone is there to ask you about it and keep you accountable so its less easy to forget about it day to day.
Don’t beat yourself up! Perfection is unattainable, and we all need to remember that. Mistakes are bound to happen, but just because you ate that one brownie after dinner or skipped a week at the gym since you were busy, doesn’t mean you have to wait until next year to start again. Jump right back on track to strive towards those goals.
If you have questions about starting a healthier lifestyle or starting an exercise routine, ask one of our great Doctors of PT at CC’s! Best of luck on all your New Year’s resolutions and cheers to a happy, healthy 2020!!
Post Author: Jenny Johnson
Jenny is a DPT, wife, baseball lover, kayaker, dog wrangler, mom to sweet girl, Bria and awaiting the newest addition to the family in February.