4 Great Tips for a Healthier New Year

You’ve set goals for healthier habits for the upcoming year. But what will make this year more successful than last?

Accountability

  • Put you goals in writing, and share them with family and friends.
  • Schedule a weekly weigh-in with a friend – same goal, same time – and record it.
  • Starting an exercise program? Commit to a class. The instructor will notice if you’re missing!
  • Actually schedule exercise on your calendar, just like you would any other important meeting or appointment.

Support

  • Joining an exercise class gives you an instant support group; consider Meriter’s Get Fit! class.
  • Find an exercise-buddy who will encourage you to get out on cold days or days you’re just not excited to exercise.
  • Consider a weight-loss program, like Weight Watchers.

Self-Awareness – Know yourself, and don’t set yourself up to fail!

  • Not a runner? Find an exercise that you like.
  • Easily bored? Change up your exercise routine.
  • Not an early bird? Don’t sign up for a 5:30 a.m. exercise class. Plan exercise for the time of day you feel most energetic.
  • Tune in to your hunger cues. Before you start eating, assess your true hunger-level. Are you eating because you’re bored or avoiding something? Do you have a habit of snacking in front of the TV or while on the computer?

Set Realistic Goals

  • Decrease portions, rather than deprive yourself. Buy snack foods in portion-controlled sizes.
  • Starting to exercise from ground zero? Begin with walking.
  • Set short and long-term goals.
  • Break a larger goal into smaller goals with measurable end points.
  • Start with two exercise sessions per week – or just 15 minute segments – and work up from there.
  • Reward yourself, and keep reminding yourself of why you’re making these changes.
  • Consider attacking one problem area at a time.
  • Improving your eating habits can have many facets – reducing snacking, increasing water consumption, eating more vegetables, reducing portion size. Choose one, make a plan with a specific time period. You may find that one healthy habit leads to another.
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