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New Year New You: Put Your Best Foot Forward for a Healthier 2016

Each year about one third of Americans resolve to better themselves in some way, but a much smaller percentage actually stay committed to their initial resolutions.

Make a commitment worth keeping this year by striving to be a better you. The start of a New Year offers a fresh outlook on the year that you may not have any other time.

If committed to becoming healthier in 2016, create a realistic plan that will best help achieve your desired results.

A year from now feel proud that because of your hard work and dedication, your blood pressure, cholesterol, insulin levels, and the number appearing on the scale reflects your commitment to your overall health. 

7 Tips to Help Achieve a Healthier YOU in the New Year

1. Map out a Plan- when going on a long road trip would you typically just jump in the car in go? If you are spontaneous by nature you may, but for most a road map and travel plan are a must. If you haven’t already, take the next few days to map out the changes you want to implement beginning with baby steps and don’t step on the gas pedal too hard.

2. Create Realistic Goals- setting goals can help you track your progress. Set various small goals ultimately leading to your overall goal in order to help avoid feeling defeated or overwhelmed. When creating your overall objective, make SMART   goals:

  • Specific
  • Measureable
  • Attainable
  • Realistic
  • Timely

3. Make a List…and Check it Twice- make a list of all the habits you are wanting to change and start working on the smaller changes first. This will allow you to feel successful early in your journey and motivate you to start conquering the tougher, more long-standing habits. Don’t make a list in your head. Place it in a spot where you can be reminded of it many times a day (on the fridge, bathroom mirror, pantry, etc.).

4. Keep Good Company- make your decision to become healthier known to those around you. They can help hold you accountable while supporting your lifestyle changes. Loved ones, friends, and colleagues may offer to become workout partners and decide they need to make their health a priority as well.

5. Find Your Genuine Motivation- what is finally motivating you to lead a healthier life? Do you want to look better, do you constantly feel sluggish, or are there medical reasons for wanting/needing to improve your overall health? Knowing exactly why you need and/or want to improve your overall health can help keep you motivated throughout your journey.

6. Get Satisfaction- eating healthy and exercising doesn’t have to feel like work. Aim for pleasure- not pain. Find healthy foods that satisfy your cravings and need to lose weight at the same time. Include relaxing exercises into you physical fitness routine. Taking a yoga class once or twice a week, bike riding with the family, and taking evening walks with loved ones in the fresh air can help break up your daily gym routine. 

7. Be Prepared for Lapses- keep in mind that when attempting to change old ways, there are bound to be lapses along the way. Do your best to ensure that if you do temporarily “fall off the wagon,” you can easily get back on. Prepare yourself from the start that you may get sidetracked once in a while, but stay determined to meet your goals one day at a time.