Goals for the New Year: Stop Making Resolutions Because Healthy Lifestyles Happen ALL Year by Dawn Taylor
I am all for people starting a fitness plan at any time of the year. And yes, sometimes the new year can bring new hope and can light a fire to ignite change. I am no different that I see the new year as a time of change. When it comes to living healthy though, this time of year offers more challenges than ever.
Holidays are stressful, people typically eat more and sometimes drink more alcohol than usual, and weight gain is not unusual. Now you are putting the pressure on yourself to lose weight on top of everything else!? It is a recipe for failure.
Many people will start the new year with big changes – they decrease calories (too many!) and start exercising intensely (too much!), but the changes will be too hard to maintain. Yes, calorie deficits and exercise are essential when trying to lose weight, but more important are long-term health goals that come with year long, consistent changes. Pushing too hard too fast could result in quitting, especially if you are slashing too many calories while frantically trying to burn them! Truth is, you'll need them for fuel and you will feel tired and irritable if you don't adjust them accordingly over time.
So, it is OK to look at the start of a new year to begin healthy habits, but be careful not to set the expectations too high, too fast. The year 2021 is 12 months and every day matters, not just the start of the year. One day at a time, and before you know it, healthy becomes a lifestyle and those special occasions won't derail you.
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