It’s that time of year again where many people make resolutions for a fitter and healthier body. More often than not, your resolutions are out the window by the time you are devouring your Valentine’s day candy. To avoid this start/stop, guilt ridden, negative behavior we must first mentally prepare ourselves for a different way to keep those resolutions. As you get older, it no longer becomes the need and importance of vanity and how you fit into your skinny jeans. It becomes a great need for a healthy heart and overall healthy life-style. Recently I overheard a local Orlando resident say his plan to get rid of body fat was to begin to exercise. He argued that he could eat and drink all you like as long as you exercise. Not the case unless you have a super high metabolic rate of a lean teenager. In order to change let’s agree to throw out the word “resolution” and instead set goals and make a plan. Here are some tips on how to jump start your fitness and better health regime for 2012.
Make S.M.A.R.T. goals.
Be SPECIFIC: Try starting with baby steps. For example “I will not eat sugar/treats (insert your biggest crave here) for one week.” Then gradually add more days and weeks. Also include your muscle strength and cardiovascular capacity. One of your goals may be to simply not get winded just by walking up a flight of stairs. Really think hard about your life and the events you struggle to maintain or complete that you wish you could.
They must be MEASURABLE: Grab a measuring tape. Create a goal sheet and record the date and the inches around your neck, your bust, your waist (the smallest part at the top), your lower stomach (right below the belly button), and each thigh. You can opt to weigh yourself however, measuring inches will really help you see the changes to your body as you continue throughout your goal. The scale tends to take much longer.
They must be ATTAINABLE: Any product, company, infomercial, etc. that claims you will lose “24 pounds in only 2 weeks” is a scam and not an attainable goal. Typically a pound per week is what you can expect to drop. Also measure yourself again after one month (not every day-this will take time).
They must be REALISTIC: Eating only carrots or trying some fad diet is a set up for failure. You must create a life-style that is realistic to maintain over the course of a life-time.
TIME your goals: Set baby steps for yourself. Typically 6 weeks is a good start. Don’t expect the fat to miraculously drop off the body. How long did it take you to gain the weight? Well, it will take some time to get into shape, slowly yet surely.
Get your head in the right place. There is no quick fix, no magic pill, and no other way to reach a healthy lifestyle without making the right choices on a day to day basis. Ring in the New Year with a new attitude. On Monday, we begin the plan for success!