Another Year, Another New Years Eve Resolution

There are three things that need to happen once you decide to begin a lifestyle change. First, you need to truly commit. You have to have conviction! Do I really want this? Can I do this for ever? Is this going to be good for me? If the answer is yes to all three, put on your rally cap, it's go time! It is on like Donkey Kong(as my kids say) and there is no turning back. Now what? Now that you have committed(#1) to making some necessary changes in your life, no matter what they may be, you need to ease into it(#2). That goes for anything in life. You have to learn to crawl before you can walk. (I am all about the clichés.) Set small goals. Once you meet those then challenge yourself to set higher ones. Start first by making simple changes in whatever it is you want to improve on. Once you have established a good base and those changes have become routine, you can build from that and then make more drastic changes. Easy does it. So now you are committed and you have eased into a good routine. Now there needs to be consistency(#3). You can't try something for 2 months and if you don't see results then try something else. Being consistent in your efforts will eventually yield results. Rome was not built in a day.

I suggest starting your lifestyle change with your diet. 85% of what you look like is what you are putting in your mouth. Unless you are doing two a days and blocking for the Cowboys you can't eat anything you want just because you are exercising. If you start with exercise you will find yourself very hungry. Exercise increases your appetite! If you haven't changed your eating habits first, you will just wind up eating more of the same crapola!

Now, about changing your eating habits. . If you don't know how to start making dietary changes, it may be a good idea to see a medically supervised weight loss program that can actually teach you how to eat. AHEM. Once you decide to start eating healthier there should be no turning back. You cannot make changes in your diet, lose some weight and then go right back to eating the way you used to. You will just gain your weight back!! When you make dietary changes you WILL initially lose weight simply because you are eating less than before. In order for you to continue to lose weight after the initial loss you have to be CONSISTENT!! You can push thru a plateau if you simply keep doing what you are doing and show your body that you mean business. It is very very normal to plateau. It is at this point that most people will give up and go back to the way they used to eat. If however, you are consistent in your efforts and stick to a lean protein, low carb way of eating you can push thru and start losing again. The key is consistency!! Depending on your metabolism and your old eating habits, this may take a couple of weeks before you truly see a change but stick to it and the change will come.

Now about exercise. Set realistic goals. If you set too high of a goal and you don't meet it, you will feel like you failed. If you feel like you have failed, you will quit. Start with three times a week. Start with walking. Once you have established that routine, you may find it easy to add another day and/or increase your work out intensity(start jogging, join a fitness class). Before you know it, you are exercising regularly. Who knew you had it in you?! By easing into it and adjusting to the new routine, you will have a much greater chance at long term success. Most of us have not done it that way. We are extremists. You know who you are. Every January you hit the gym with gusto. You go from coach potato to gym rat. You are there 5 times a week. By the middle of February, you know all of the gym staff names not to mention their personal issues and you spend anywhere from 1 to 2 hours a day working out. You are going hard, the work outs are intense, and you sweat buckets! By the end of March you have gained 2 pounds! But hey, it muscle right? You stick to it another month and……nothin'!! No weight loss, some muscle gain and you are exhausted. What happened? How could all of that hard work have yielded such poor results? What happened was that you went from zero to 60 in record time and you ran out of gas!! What happened was that your appetite went thru the roof, you burned out quickly and so did your metabolism! Your poor little body that was used to sitting on the couch was thrown for a loop(like it was last January). It did not get the memo. That memo would have stated "we are making some necessary changes to help improve moral". Start, initially with some cardio, 30 to 45 minutes to build up your stamina. Three times a week is a good start. Once you stop seeing results and have been conditioned with cardio alone add some weight training two days a week. Again easing into it, start with light weights. When you begin a workout routine it takes time, conditioning and it especially takes consistency before you see real results. Be patient, be consistent and if you stick to it, presto! Change happens, significant change.

If you really and truly want to make a change for yourself, one that will improve your overall health, improve your appearance, improve the quality of your life and improve your self esteem ,then just do it. Make the commitment, ease into it and be consistent. This New Years Eve, resolve to being the best version of yourself. Know that it may take hard work, you may stall out and plateau but if you push thru and stay on course you will get there. Happy New You!