Are you among the 45% of Americans who usually make New Year’s Resolutions? I usually do, but I have to admit I have mixed feelings about them. On the one hand, I’m all about people setting goals to improve their lives. Even if the resolutions are not ultimately achieved, every step in the right direction is a win in my book! On the other hand, I know that so many people set New Year’s Resolutions that are unattainable, and then feel defeated when the resolutions are not achieved. 1 out of 3 people ditch their vows by the end of January! Some of the top reasons include being too busy or not being committed to their goals in the first place.
If you’re looking for a New Year’s Resolution that will improve your health, here are 7 resolutions I recommend:
- Drink 8 glasses of water per day. Some tips to make this easier include adding slices of lemon, lime or orange to your water; keep a water bottle or pitcher with you at your desk or in your car. Be sure to track your progress!
- Add more fruit and vegetables into your diet. Aim for 5‐9 servings of fruits and vegetables per day to increase your fiber, vitamins and minerals. Fresh fruit or vegetables are easy to pack to take with you to work or school. Find out which fruits and veggies are in season, even in the winter and stock up at the store or your local farmers markets.
- Fit in exercise or some movement every day. This does not mean to not take a rest day from the gym. There a huge health benefits from taking a leisurely walk at lunchtime or afterwork. Stretching and light yoga count too! Perfect for de-stressing!
- Learn a new type of exercise or achieve a new fitness goal. Have you ever wanted to try spinning, weight lifting or try a 5K? How about increasing your dead lift or squat goal? Recruit a friend with a similar goal. This also helps keep you motivated and you now have an accountability partner!
- Eat at home 5 nights per week or pack your lunch 3 times per week. The point of this is to increase the number of home cooked meals versus dining out. Of course home‐cooked meals can be more time consuming, but with planning and practice you can make more meals in your kitchen while eating healthier, cutting calories, saving money, and increasing family time. By prepping dishes the night before or the morning of, this can help save time after work. Set aside 2 hours to meal prep on a Sunday. This is a huge timesaver and can also help you stay prepared for the week.
- Commit to no less than 7 hours or sleep each night. This is a tough one for most people and myself included(this is on my list for this year!). Try powering down no later than 7pm and recharging your phone and laptop in another room.
- Reduce added sugars and/or artificial sweeteners. This can be a tough one to measure… but here are a few ideas and suggestions. If you eat full sugar yogurt, try a nonfat plain greek yogurt and add some fresh fruit and a sweetener like stevia. If you are someone that adds quite a bit of sugar to your morning coffee, try adding stevia or instead of 1-2 tablespoons of sugar reduce it to 2 teaspoons. Switch out your creamer for skim milk or unsweetened almond or coconut milk. These small swaps can make a huge difference!
Have you thought about hiring a health coach to help you attain your goals? Working with a health coach can provide the motivation, individualized attention and accountability you need to turn your good intentions into positive actions.
I would love to help you reach your 2016 goals whether it be health related or if you need to get back to the basics in the kitchen. Click here for more information on my coaching services.