New Year’s resolutions to lose weight, exercise more, and eat better have been declared! The energy of a fresh start can be felt everywhere, the wave of change is strong, and this time it will be different. We’re certain of it! But, according to the Marist Poll, 32% of American who make new year resolutions will not succeed. Typically, the resolve to stick to our this-time-it’s-for-real resolutions fade by the third week in January. Put your resolution up to our five-point checklist to be sure you’ve made a rock solid resolution.
1. Focus on the steps to the goal, not the goal itself. If you’ve resolved to lose weight – congratulations! Losing as little as 10% of your current weight can help prevent or reverse diabetes, high blood pressure and cholesterol, which are risk factors for heart disease and stroke. But the numbers on the scale are the last thing you should be looking at. Concentrate on the steps to help loose weight – eating healthy and exercise. By putting more emphasis on those actions, weight loss should follow.
2. Have a weekly plan. Consider a weekly plan your own personal GPS. You can’t get where you’re going if you don’t map out how you are going to get there. Pick a day each week to look at the week ahead. Plan out your home exercise, trips to the gym, and meal planning including eating out. This can help anticipate busier days and plan accordingly.
3. Prep on Sundays. “Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.” – Alexander Graham Bell.
Most people don’t get healthier by accident. Preparation is the key to healthier habits, and a meal prep day for the coming week is essential to prepare to succeed at weight loss.
Create a section of the refrigerator for grab-and-go breakfasts, snacks, and lunches. Ideas include single serving Greek yogurt with a piece of fruit or individual vegetable quiche cups for breakfast. Wash, cut, and store vegetables and fruits in single serving containers or bags and pair with a individual serving of hummus and/or a hard-boiled egg for a snack, and portion out soups and salads for lunch. When time is tight in the morning, all you need to do is grab and go to keep your new year’s resolutions on track.
4. Keep a journal. A study from Kaiser Permanente’s Center for Health Research, one of the largest and longest weight-loss maintenance trials ever conducted, found those who kept food records for at least 6 days each week lost twice as much weight as those who kept no records. It didn’t matter how the record was kept, paper and pen or electronic, but that is was consistently used.
5. Forgive yourself for slip-ups. There will always be moments when too many slices of pizza were eaten or too many workouts skipped. The key to get back on track is to forgive yourself, forget, and start again.
The physicians and staff of Michigan Urgent Care and Occupational Health wish you much success for all your New Year’s resolutions. Our clinics are open 365 days a year, including holidays. We have digital X-ray and experienced providers to care for exercise- and sports-related injuries, and can care for colds and flu to get you back to focusing on your 2017 goals.