Starting off the New Year is the perfect time to think about the positive changes you want to make like losing weight, getting healthier or tackling a new project. It’s that time of year when motivation and enthusiasm are at an all-time high and where anything seems possible!While most of us know that getting healthier can be done any time of the year, the start of a new year inspires people to make improvements to their life. One of the most popular New Year’s resolutions is to get in shape, followed by exercising more and staying fit and healthy. What makes New Year’s resolutions seem so promising? Obviously, having a fresh start is something we can all relate to and when we are inspired, there are no bounds to what we can accomplish. However, we have to have a realistic plan and clear goals to work towards.
When starting in January, ensure you have a successful start to your fitness routine by making sure your brain and body are in sync. This just means that your brain commands your entire body and once your brain has a clear understanding of the importance you have attached to getting in shape, your brain will kick in when working out when you get tired; otherwise, your body might decide it wants to sit down and take a nap.
However you have decided to get started, you are on your first step of a healthier lifestyle. You’ve made the first step, now let us help you take it to the next level.
Writing down your Goal(s)
Once you are on your way to getting fit, don’t take the chance of running out of steam and possibly losing your motivation. That’s why it’s important to put everything you want to accomplish in writing; from the type of changes you want to see, the baby steps you have made and the goals you have achieved.
You’ll find it’s harder to ignore your goals when they’re written down versus just “thinking” about how you want to look and feel. If you think you want to lose weight, get healthier and workout more, be clear about your goals. Try writing them down something like this, “I want to lose 10 lbs, bring down my cholesterol and work out 4 days a week.”
Don’t leave any ambiguity about your goals. This may lead you to mentally twist around what your original goals were and lose focus on what you are trying to achieve.
We can’t think of anyone who wouldn’t appreciate a positive change happening in their life by just the snap of a finger! But, let’s think about this for a minute. Your mind is incredibly powerful and resourceful, which is why the saying goes “mind over matter.”
It makes sense then, that when creating challenges for yourself, be realistic and only commit to what you’re willing to do and what you’re willing to give up. Too often, we get wrapped up in our head of how we’ll look and feel once we meet our goals, but in reality, we forget that in real time, it’s actually our own butt that needs to get up at 5am in the freezing cold and go work out.
Here’s an example from a co-worker who almost got in over his head.
“After deciding it was time to get my body back into shape, I decided to look at health clubs that would meet my needs and not break the bank. A new health club was having a grand opening and advertised their monthly fees started as low as $10/month. Wow, what a great deal, I thought. The deal was something like $70/month. However, if you worked out 10-15 days, it was $50/month, if you worked out 16-20 days, it was $40/month, if you worked out 21-29 days it was $30/month and if you could do the almost impossible… by working out every day, the cost would drop to only $10/month!
All I could think of was the $10/month and how much money I would save; since of course, I would be in the gym every day to get fit, right? Wrong! For as strong as my desire was to get in shape, there was no way I would be able to turn my life around and be at the gym once a day. In theory, it was a great idea, but I quickly figured out that this wouldn’t work out for me. Although you’d think I would have been committed to working hard to get in shape to save money; there was no amount of money I could have saved, to get me to come to that gym every day and every month.”
How to be Accountable
Once you’ve completed a realistic timeline of what your goals are, make a commitment to yourself to complete what you’ve started. Most of us know how to be accountable in life; i.e., paying the bills, buying groceries, or taking the kids to the doctor, etc. To keep yourself honest with your progress, rely on your written goals and review them frequently, making adjustments as needed.
Slow and Steady Wins the Race
There is nothing more exciting about getting healthy than wanting to make that change as quickly as possible. The problem is that change takes time. When you first start working out, you might be able to speed through two hours of a workout, but at what cost? If you haven’t worked out for a while and you go full throttle on exercising and don’t slow build up to it, you could be at a higher risk of injuring your body. More than that is that setting a fast pace in the beginning is usually unsustainable, which is why fitness experts suggest you start slowly. Don’t risk losing your motivation and getting burned out simply because you can.
Follow the lead of what your body is telling you and listen. Creating a new, healthier body is fantastic, but as they say, “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” Allow yourself time to adjust to a new routine. Allow yourself a day off to rest, and work out at a level that makes sense for your body and your schedule. The end goal will still be the same, whether you get there in a one month or eight months.
Don’t Focus on the Negatives
Despite our best efforts, things will not always work out the way we want. Regular interruptions to your life can and do happen, such as, becoming sick or caring for a sick child, working on a late night project, or not feeling motivated to work out. The point is to not get stuck in the mindset that you have failed in some way. While some of us will be able to dust ourselves off and continue on without interruption, other may not be so quick to jump up and start again. To get going again, just remember this simple playground rule that when you fall down, pick yourself up, and repeat as necessary.
Keep it Simple
After the New Year, there’s a good chance you will be bombarded with advertisements and commercials showing you the latest workouts and “guaranteeing” that your quest to be fit can be done in only seven days! We get it… it’s easy to get caught up in all the hype. But in reality, starting off with a good pair of sneakers, a water bottle and some tunes, should be enough to get you started. Try the Sporto Women’s Sneaker which is easy to pull on and off without having to deal with the laces. For staying hydrated, the Red Copper Insulated Mug is perfect for keeping cold drinks cold and hot drinks hot.
While exercise is very important to improving your overall health by eating healthier meals, planning in advance and using the basic food pyramid will help you with your overall goals of getting healthier. Getting the variety of foods to eat to help maintain your energy, the proper servings of the different food groups and limiting foods that are not good for you is also significant when getting healthier.
Keep healthy fruits and vegetables easily accessible for snacking or cooking by storing them in containers that are easy to see and use. These handy sectioned vegetable containers allow vegetables to stay crisp by simply adding water to both sides.
You can find additional containers in all different sizes with the 120 piece food container set. If your kitchen cabinets have mismatched containers and lids, then we suggest you start with a brand new food container set to keep all your foods separated and easy to find.
We understand that starting something new or working to improve old habits might not come easily, but when you think about the outcome, isn’t it worth it? We hope we have given you some practical suggestions that you can implement and inspired you to make this New Year about becoming a Better You!