The start of the new year is a chance many of us take to set new personal goals for ourselves and reflect on the ones we set the year before. Personal improvement can be broad and encompass a range of categories — career goals, behavioral habits, financial stability, and a healthier body. Health goals are not only the ones most commonly set, they’re usually the ones that are most commonly broken.
I can certainly speak from experience! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to start and restart my “healthy eating plan” when somebody brings Krispy Kreme or Popeyes into the office. That’s part of the reason I’ve had the hardest time getting rid of those last 10 lbs from my last pregnancy! But in 2017, we’re getting these pounds off Funky Junkies!
I’ve also found a few ways to stay diligent and committed to the health goals I’ve set for myself. Here are some helpful hints for both setting and maintaining the goals you’ve established for yourself in 2017.
Starting small isn’t a bad thing. When we think of goal-setting, we typically think of it in grandiose terms. And that’s great — as they say, aim for the moon, and even if you miss you’ll land amongst the stars. Still, taking baby steps can be effective, too. Setting small goals that you know you can accomplish enables you to have successes quickly and to begin building momentum. For example, instead of committing to the full P90X session three times per week, I’ve committed myself to doing a 30 minute version once per week. You could start with a 10 minute walk or stretch.
Use visual aids. This is one I am starting this year. Making charts and graphs is not only a great way to track your progress, it can also be a great motivator. Let’s say your health goal involves shaving time off of your mile. Tally your time and and turn the data into a line graph. Seeing and adding to that slope with each trial can be a spectacular feeling! It can be even simpler. I’m planning to create a chart to track the days I exercise each month. Hey…if it works to get my son to not wet the bed…it’s gotta work for me too!
Reward yourself frequently! Of course, everybody loves cheat days from their diet. There are many calorie-free ways to reward yourself, too. Try turning some normal things you love — shopping, trips to the movies, a massage etc. — into periodic rewards for milestone achievements. My personal treat is a trip to the spa for a massage or pedicure.
Setting and keeping up with your health goals is all about keeping yourself honest. As my husband says, don’t cheat yourself on your workout. We don’t take short cuts (or in my case stop the 30-minute P90X video after 25 minutes). Instead, we keep moving…even if it’s at a slower pace. To quote Bey “I’ma keep running cause a winner don’t quit on themselves.”
Let’s make it happen in 2017 Funky Junkies! We will hold each other accountable and be our best selves yet!