Have you made a New Year’s resolution (or five)? The most popular typically have to do with health, specifically exercise and weight loss. Unfortunately, these are the resolutions that are most likely to fail, but why? The good news is, is that it isn’t you. You haven’t failed; the resolution has let you down. How can you set goals that set you up for success?
Your resolution is too strict, and it’s all or nothing.
Resolving to go the gym at 5 am every day is great, but is it realistic for you if you like to sleep in (like I do)? Considering a low carb diet, but you love bread? Research shows that strict goals and deprivation will backfire. Find more realistic plans that fit your lifestyle, or modify them to increase your chances of success.Would you be willing to do an early workout at the gym four days a week if you had a buddy? Instead of low carb, how about making a change to choosing healthier carbs, such as more fruit and whole grains?
Your resolutions aren’t well planned, or you don’t know why you want to achieve them.
Most resolutions are too vague. "I want to work out,” or "I want to lose weight" aren’t specific enough. What days of the week do you plan to exercise? What your weight goals and time frame? Schedule exercise on your calendar, just like you would make any other appointment.Set a day to weigh in and track your progress. Remember that sometimes goals change too--be flexible and kind to yourself.
Give thought to why you want to achieve the resolutions in the first place. For example, are you exercising to improve your mood and energy, or is it because you think you’ll lose weight?
You haven’t found support for your goals.
Would your resolution to lose weight be more successful in a structured program with a registered dietitian and scheduled weigh-ins, or are you able to monitor yourself using a calorie-tracking app? Would a gym membership with fitness classes suit your personality, or do you want to go it alone with a 30-minute daily walk? Everyone is different—some require lots of external accountability, while others can find that internal motivation. Which one are you?
Mary Rutan Hospital offers many options to help you achieve your wellness resolutions in 2018. Check out the Winter Walking Program which begins January 8th. Get support for your weight loss goals with our Weight Management Program; call for information at 599-7044. Learn more about a healthy lifestyle with our eight week Creating a Healthy ME program, which starts in late February (call 599-7005 for more information on exact start dates).