Becoming more fit, healthy and/or losing weight are the more popular New Year’s resolutions. Don’t fall victim to the many quick fix plans, even scams that will be prevalent. Here are some tips on what you SHOULD do to make change towards these type of resolutions.
One Step at a Time
Don’t try to go from 0 to 60 starting January 1st! Start by making one change at a time. This can be difficult because the gratification will not be instant, but you will be happier when the next New Year’s rolls around. If you eat fast food frequently, try to reduce the number of times you go each week. If you are not doing any exercise currently, try to go walking a couple of times each week. Once you achieve that goal, move the frequency or difficulty up. If you try to be perfect and change all your habits at once, you may find yourself giving up soon. Even with these small changes you may start to see progress, just keep moving up to the next step of more nutritious choices and more movement.
Frequent, Small Goals
When you crash diet, you may see change quickly. It is hard to go from that to less frequent milestones. If you start to implement these smaller changes, you may find it helpful to create small goals for yourself. If you reach the small goals it could keep your interest for longer. Small goals could be exercising 3x that week, not eating fast food for a certain period of time, going out to eat and not going off plan, fitting into a certain clothing item, etc. It is best to not have scale related goals because so many factors can influence your body weight. Once you have achieved these small goals you have set, find a reward that you look forward to but will also not derail your progress.
This tip has made the most significant impact for myself in losing over 75 pounds after my first pregnancy, and now losing about 45 pounds (still in progress) after my second pregnancy. If I made any mistakes in my “diet” in the past I would just give up by bingeing that day or week or who knows how long. Being consistent in eating well and working out or getting right back on that horse is key. Now if I go off plan, I get right back to it or I adjust the rest of the day to accommodate for what I ate.
What do you do to create habit change?