We do it every year; we make a resolution to go healthy. Unfortunately, most new year’s resolutions don’t come close to making it 365 days. In fact, a study from FranklinCovey estimates that only 23% of resolutions endure the entire calendar. But improving your health takes motivation, and a new year’s resolution can provide just that. So we want to help you make them last!
Here are the most common health related new year’s resolutions. We’ve identified what makes them so hard to keep, and how you can make them stick for 2013:
Why we fail: We don’t set realistic goals. We want to lose it all, and we want to lose it fast! But if you want to lose weight and keep it off, dieting or quick fix weight loss techniques usually won’t stick. Gaining back weight can also be really defeating, and once the motivation is gone, most of us fall back into our old habits.
How to make it stick: Change your resolution to “Add a few healthy habits.” Instead of a full diet, start with a few changes that will make a big impact. Here are a few tips that will get the ball rolling:
- Substitute an unsweetened beverage for soda
- Add one serving of vegetables and one serving of fruit
- Eat a healthy breakfast every day. Breakfast kick-starts your metabolism and curbs hunger throughout the day.
- Drink lots of water
2) Exercise more
Why we fail: We don’t make exercise fun. While some people love working out in a gym, 60% of gym memberships go unused because gyms offer monotonous exercise that puts most of us to sleep. While joining a gym can be a good start to getting more exercise, we need to get creative
How to make it stick: Change your resolution to “Try new ways to exercise.” Switch it up and try some new activities. Here are a few ideas to incorporate some new forms of exercise, and to make them fun:
- Make exercising social. If you get your friends involved, it’ll become much more enjoyable
- Have a goal in mind, and track your progress. If you start running or walking, train for a local race. A couch-to-5k program is a great place to start.
- Check out this post on how to exercise indoors.
3) Quit tobacco
Why we fail: We go “cold turkey.” Only 15% of people who quit on January 1 make it six months without tobacco. While it sounds great to completely kick the habit, doing it all at once isn’t the best long-term solution.
How to make it stick: Change your resolution to “Start the process of quitting tobacco.” There are lots of resources available to help you out. Patches, gums, support lines, and classes can all help you slowly get off tobacco. If you use your resources and make quitting tobacco a long-term process, you’ll have a much better likelihood of success.
4) Stress Less
Why we fail: Lots of us are already saying, “Holy cow it’s already 2013!?” At work, with your family, or in your day-to-day life, the new year brings on lots of new tasks, goals, and objectives. While it’s a great idea to cut your stress, the beginning of the year is a difficult time to start.
How to make it stick: Change your resolution to “Add a few stress relieving activities to your routine.” You can’t cut stress all at once, but you can start looking for ways to get some “you-time” into your daily routine. To get things rolling, identify what makes you relax, and find 15 minutes every day to incorporate it into your life.