Why we wait till January 1 to put our personal resolutions into place I will never understand. If you have something in your life that needs a little tweak or elimination why not start doing little things in that moment to aid in the success of your lifestyle change. From what I’ve been hearing the number one New Year’s resolution is to lose weight this year. I interpret this as “I want to look and feel better”. Now enter the word diet. This word diet really implies cutting out your favorite foods (and let’s get real I don’t have the desire to do that). “Good health happens when the physical, emotional and social or environmental parts of our lives are in balance,” said Dr. Amy Crawford-Faucher, a family physician at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. So here are a few ways to approach that resolution as a side benefit instead of the main goal.
Make it routine. Begin your day with breakfast. Just move (walk outside, go to the gym, go dancing, swim, ect). Drink more fluid. Breathing exercises before bed. Take pictures of your health initiatives and actually post them.
Try new things. New restaurants. New workouts. New types of exercise (boot camps, gym, yoga). New grains (such as: couscous, barley, quinoa). New greens (such as: kale, collards, Swiss chard). New foods in general (such as: coconut oil, persimmons, chia seeds). New recipes. New grocery stores/farmers markets/co-ops.
Find motivators. Create a playlist. Find a new gadget that will get you moving (watch, heart rate monitor, iPod arm bands, pedometer, bike, roller blades, water bottles, flip belt (google it), weighted vest). Find a new gadget that will get you cooking (crockpot, food processor, kitchen aid). Have fun with your workout wardrobe. Call up your friends (to workout with/keep you accountable/cook with).
Schedule a visit. Consult your registered dietitian for info/ideas/grocery shopping/help. If you’re not comfortable with lifting weights then get a personal trainer for a few sessions. Get your blood work checked. See a chiropractor. Schedule routine gender specific visits.
Add something. Protein to your snacks. Two more bottles of water. An extra veggie to dinner. Buy a new cookbook. A trendy health initiative (ex: meatless Monday).
Swap something. Swap soda for water, alfredo for marinara sauce, white for whole grain bread, fully loaded coffee for black coffee, yogurt for Greek yogurt, oatmeal for steel cut oats, butter for oil, crackers for veggie sticks, cappuccino for latte, croutons for nuts, cocktails for red wine, sour cream for Greek yogurt,
Get more sleep. Studies have shown that sleep helps burn fat, boost immunity, decrease stress levels, regulate hormone control, rev up metabolism, improve academic performance, and so many more. (More food for thought: the earlier you hit the hay the less likely you are to start eating or drinking those extra calories)
Wow – that’s a lot of information. The take home message here: GO SLOW AND BE PATIENT. So maybe choose a few of these to start incorporating into your daily routine and overtime you will see them turn into a habit. Remember that health is a relationship that you have with your body and you will get out what you put in.
Happy New Years and let’s make it a good one!