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A Guide To Keeping Your
New Year's Resolutions
Do you have a New Year's Resolution? Well, if you're like
most Americans (88 percent in 2001 according to a General Nutrition Centers
poll), you have at least one resolution. And, if you are like the majority of
these promise-makers, your resolution is probably related to health and fitness.
In 2001 (according to GNC), 55 percent promised to eat healthier, 50 percent
resolved to exercise more, and 38 percent wanted to lose weight.
While resolutions are
well-intentioned, unfortunately most people fail at keeping them. With all the
hype surrounding these promises, it's easy to get caught up in them without
really taking them seriously.
We live in a throw-away society
and even our resolutions, I'm afraid, are not immune. However, especially for
promises that include improving our health it's in our best interest to not
take them lightly.
So, what's the secret to
successful resolutions? While you can't wave a magic wand and make your
resolution come true, there are some easy steps to take to make it easier to
fulfill your promise to yourself.
an obtainable goal. Resolving to look like a super
model is not realistic for the majority of us, but promising to include daily
physical activity in our lives is very possible.
choosing a resolution that you've been unsuccessful at achieving year after
year. This will only set you up for failure, frustration and
disappointment. If you are still tempted to make a promise that you've made
before, then try altering it. For example, instead of stating that you are
going to lose 30 pounds, try promising to eat healthier and increase your
a game plan. At the beginning of January, write a comprehensive plan. All
successful businesses start with a business plan that describes their mission
and specifics on how they will achieve it. Write your own personal plan
and you'll be more likely to succeed as well.
it down and make it less intimidating. Rather than one BIG end goal,
dissect it into smaller pieces. Set several smaller goals to achieve
throughout the year that will help you to reach the ultimate goal. Then even
if you aren't able to reach your final goal, you will have many smaller, but
still significant, achievements along the way. For example, if your goal is to
complete a 10K race, your smaller goals could be running a 5K in less than 30
minutes, adding upper and lower body strength training to increase your
muscular endurance, and running 2 miles with a personal best completion time.
friends and family members to help you so you have someone to be accountable
to. Just be sure to set limits so that this doesn't backfire and become
more irritating than helpful. For example, if you resolve to be more positive
ask them to gently remind you when you start talking negatively.
yourself with each milestone. If you've stuck with your resolution for 2
months, treat yourself to something special. But, be careful of your reward
type. If you've lost 5 pounds, don't give yourself a piece of cake as an
award. Instead, treat yourself to a something non-food related, like a
go it alone! Get professional assistance. Everyone needs help and
sometimes a friend just isn't enough. Sometimes you need the help of a
trained professional. Don't feel that seeking help is a way of copping out.
Especially when it comes to fitness, research studies have shown that
assistance from a fitness professional greatly improves peoples success rate.
your number of promises. You'll spread yourself too thin trying to make
multiple changes in your life. This will just lead to failure of all of the
On average only about 20% of us keep our New
Year's resolutions. Unfortunately, some of the biggest failures are found in
fitness resolutions. But don't let the statistics get you down. By following
the tips above you'll be better equipped to fall into the successful 20%
If you need professional help with a
fitness-related resolution, enroll in
one our personalized programs.
About the author: Lynn Bode is a certified personal trainer specializing in
Internet-based fitness programs. She founded Workouts For You, which
provides affordable online exercise programs that are custom designed for
each individual. Visit: http://www.workoutsforyou.com for a free sample
workout and to sign-up for their monthly fitness newsletter. Fitness
professionals, visit: http://www.trainerforce.com
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