How to Make New Years Resolutions that Actually Work
We all know the typical story…we make a nice neat pile of resolutions and then a month later, it’s as if we never made them. It’s okay, it happens to many of us. The key isn’t about persistence (though that is certainly helpful), it’s about creating the right goals. Please don’t say, “I want to lose 60 pounds in a month!” Not going to happen without drugs, crash diets, or other very bad things.
Let’s make SMART resolutions: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely! Yes, this is coming from a personal trainer, how could you tell. So let’s say you want to lose 15 pounds. But specifically, how are you going to do it? Specific terms would be…workout every week, add more servings of vegetables and fruit a day, drinking more cups of water a day, and hiring a personal trainer. That is how you will specifically lose that weight. And why do you want to lose that weight? Let’s say to increase daily energy, increase confidence, and decrease hypertension.
Moving onto measurable goals…this is where we provide a number to all those ways we are going to achieve those goals. Let’s add the frequency of workouts…4 times a week, both cardio and strength training. And we will add 3 more servings of fruits and vegetables each day. And finally, we will drink 3 more cups of water a day. Remember, don’t start crazy big, we want to start in baby steps so we can actually achieve them.
Next is attainable…this we have already set forth. Look up, does that seem attainable? Losing 15 pounds? Sure does, because we’ve laid out a plan before us. Then we move onto the relevant step: here we want to ensure that our minor goals and rules make sense with our bigger resolution of losing weight. For example, to stop drinking soda when you already don’t drink soda is not very useful. Instead, think about those weaknesses. Let’s make another limit, only one oreo per week instead of one per day. You still get your fix but it is significantly diminished.
And now, timely! You want to lose 15 pounds in 3 months. That is 5 pounds per month, an extremely attainable goal. So let’s put it all together.
By March 1st, you will lose 15 pounds, by losing 5 pounds a month in order to increase daily energy, confidence, and decrease hypertension. You are going to do this by strength and cardio training 4 times a week, increasing your fruit and vegetable serving intake by 3 a day, adding 3 cups of water a day, and hiring a personal trainer. You are also going to limit yourself to one oreo per week.
So there’s just an example of one resolution. Make a whole list of them! Make sure you know how you are going to achieve them and that there are baby steps for you to follow. You can add more limitations of course, like fast food only twice a month. You can also add more ways you will achieve the goal such as walk the dog twice a day for x amount of miles. And keep track of everything! Weigh yourself, measure your fat percentage, however you would like to.
Please feel free to share your own resolutions and how you are going to achieve them! Happy News Years!!