Posted Dec, 14th 2018 by
BestMedicine by Renown Health
Already planning your resolutions? If you’re like most people, you’ll make them — only to break them within a few months. Here’s insight from Renown’s registered dietitians about setting and keeping your New Year’s resolutions in 2019.
No surprise here, but 2018’s most common resolutions: eating healthier and getting more exercise. Will those ringing in 2019 make the same goals? If trends are any indication, the answer is a resounding “yes.” So how do those who resolve to commit to their own health improve their future success?
Renown Dietitians Stephen Compston, RD, LD, CDE, and Caitlin Bus, RD, LD, CDE, gave us some practical guidelines for ringing in the new year with realistic resolutions.
What are some tips to stay on track as the year progresses?
“It’s important to make your resolution ‘SMART,’ which stands for specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely,” Compston says. “For example, instead of saying ‘I want to exercise more’ make it more specific and measurable. Change it to ‘I will go to the gym and exercise at least 30 minutes each day, 3 times per week.'”
Bus reminds us to not overwhelm ourselves when setting those goals.
“It’s easy to get overly ambitious and come up with a list of resolutions with no plan for reaching your desired outcomes,” Bus says. “And a resolution without a plan or specificity equates to nothing more than a wish. You don’t have to overhaul your life and set five goals at once. Focus on one or two objectives at a time — you can always set additional goals as the year progresses. Narrowing your focus and setting an attainable resolution or two is simple.”
What can we do to make sure our goal is attainable but still pushes us?
“Break up your resolution into smaller goals that don’t require months of vigilance before getting a pat on the back or seeing results,” Bus says. “Creating a timeline with individual action steps you can check off periodically will help you feel more successful.”
Compston recommends assessing where you are today in your health goals — and setting a realistic goal based on that.
“If you aren’t exercising at all right now, don’t aim to do five days a week — try two days to start,” he says. “Then, as you hit your goals, you can increase them. The same goes for healthy eating. It takes time and commitment to eat healthy. Start by limiting the number of times you eat out each week then work up to meal planning and preparation.”
What are some easy tips for people looking to jump start their New Year’s resolutions to get healthy and lose weight?
“To start, eat whole foods as much as possible, because the more processed a food is, the less healthy it is for you,” Compston says. “Another simple tip: Move more. The more you move, the more calories you’ll burn each day. You don’t have to jump into high intensity boot camp workouts, just get yourself walking and moving.”
Bus suggests involving others in your goal-setting, which can be helpful by creating more accountability.
“Some individuals find that publicizing personal goals on social media provides needed motivation,” Bus says. “But you don’t have to make a Facebook or Twitter announcement to create that momentum. Simply sharing your goals with a friend or family member can increase your likelihood of success. And it creates more than accountability — you’ll also get support and encouragement from those you care about most to help propel you forward. Making your objectives known may even motivate others around you to set their own goals or stick with the ones they’ve made.”
RELATED: Exercise is Medicine: Keep Active with a Low-Heart-Rate Walk or Jog
What is the biggest mistake people make when setting their weight loss goals?
“The ‘all or nothing’ attitude is a big threat,” Compston says. “People end up ‘cheating’ on their diet and decide to blow the rest of the day instead of getting back on track. It’s OK to slip up, just don’t let it be an excuse to stop your efforts altogether. Keep pushing yourself and as you achieve one resolution or goal, set a new one to keep pushing yourself.”
And while it’s easy to dwell on your shortcomings, Bus recommends steering clear of negative thinking.
“As you work toward your goals, focus on the positives instead,” she says. “Keep a list of your accomplishments. No one’s perfect, and it’s unrealistic to assume you’re going to set goals and execute them perfectly. Give yourself some space to be human. Celebrate your successes along the way — no matter how small.”
Change can be hard and stressful. Don’t punish yourself or give up altogether because you have a bad day or two. Get right back on that proverbial horse and keep going. Remember: Three steps forward and one step back is still two steps forward.
With the New Year upon us, it seems a lot of people are wondering where and when those extra pounds arrived. Reaching for that chocolate bar or high-calorie low nutrient dense food can have a massive negative impact on your health. A healthy lifestyle can be simple, clean eating, proper water intake and staying active is a great place to start.
Taking a proactive approach to your health has long-term benefits for sure, but did you know that the benefits can start immediately? Eating a balanced whole food diet with regular exercise can at once get you started down the road to a healthier you. Those three simple activities alone can add years to your life. Did you also know that continued healthy living can also reduce the risk of certain diseases including cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, and obesity?
In the short-term, however, a healthy lifestyle can help you immediately look and feel your best, but that's not all. Small, simple changes can give you more energy and help you maintain a fresh healthy and happy outlook. Making changes slowly and sticking to a daily routine is critical to stick to any new regiment. Adhering to healthy active living is the key to reducing the risk of these diseases.
So how do we go about making the change to a healthier you? Start by eating one healthy meal a day then increase as desired. Get your 5-a-day fruits and vegetables. Juicing is a great way to incorporate this, and they taste great. Don't deny yourself but try having treats only occasionally it is why they are called "treats."
Last but not least start enriching your life with more activity. Exercising can be a walk you wouldn't have otherwise taken, joining a gym, dancing, yoga, or running around with the kids or grandkids. What is important isn't what you do the crucial part is remembering to get up and move. Improving your lifestyle with small steps in the right direction will have a significant lasting impact on your happiness, well-being, and comfort for years to come.
Offer tips, health information and product reviews. Everything Natural is the area's leading source for organic and natural products that will help you make smarter and healthier choices while shopping for food, gifts, vitamins and supplements.