This post is from a few years ago, but still rings true today.....
Well it is that time again…have you made your New Year’s Resolution? I say, let’s just abandon that tradition all together and be more practical about our goals! My New Year’s Resolutions have been broken so many times that I find I am no longer bothered when I lose my way before February! This year, banish that idea of setting a goal to accomplish sometime over the next 365 days. Usually our goals are too big or too vague and a whole year is much too long for us to stay focused (especially since we have this little distraction called children). This year, let’s meet our goals all year long.
My resolution has always been to lose weight, get fit, be smaller (does this sound familiar to anyone else?). Since I spent all of last year gaining weight (I was pregnant) and most of this year giving all of my attention to my daughter…I still need that resolution. Earlier this year I decided that I could not wait for New Year’s Day to for a resolution to lose weight, get fit, be smaller, be healthier! I had to be proactive! As a nutritionist and a fitness instructor, who would have thought that I would need to find ways to motivate myself to become healthier?
Here is another revelation that I had…children are not automatically conducive to a healthy lifestyle for moms. I ate whatever I could grab with one hand or quickly while she napped, and I did not exercise because I was so wrapped up in her schedule that I gave up having one at all! I am with moms everyday and I know that I am not the only one who forgot about myself and focused solely on my baby. So for both of us, these are the keys we have all heard before but rarely been able to implement into our lives for meeting our goals to lose weight, get fit, and be healthy!
Here is the first one…BEGIN! Don’t wait for some perfect time when you are not busy, don’t have a party to go to, the baby is not fussy, and the planets are aligned. Can you think of a time when you were lounging without a “to do” list, had no one around you tempting you with unhealthy foods, and the baby was in a perfect mood or better yet napping? I didn’t think so. That time will never come. Make a plan to get over the obstacle of the moment and those yet to come. Whatever you do, just begin working toward your goal.
Here is the second one…INCORPORATE exercise and eating healthy into your daily life and needs. Some obvious ways to add exercise to your daily life are to park further away at the store, take the stairs, do squats during Oprah’s commercial breaks, do calf raises while waiting in line. Find ways to incorporate your little one into your goals. Children need to eat healthy, so eat healthy together (baby eats carrots, mom eats carrots). You should also try to eat with your little ones, not only are you teaching them by example but you are also eating more frequently which is good for your metabolism! Try to meet your “mom needs” with exercise and eating well. If you need a Mom’s Night Out or to reconnect with your girl friends, sign up for a tennis lesson together or just meet to take a walk on a regular schedule. If you need to be with other moms to share your victories and challenges, join a mom’s group that exercises together before they go out for coffee or encourage your current group to add a date that includes exercise. Be creative and work a little exercise into your day in a way that you enjoy or don’t notice!
Here is the third one…set a REASONABLE and MEASURABLE GOAL! If you want to lose 30 pounds set a goal to lose 5 by the end of January. That is a little over one pound a week which is reasonable and measurable, and you are not setting yourself up for disappointment by having a goal that is too hard to attain. If running a 5K (3.1 miles) is your goal, then set a goal to walk that far at least once a week and create a plan to gradually increase your running on the other 2-3 days a week. Don’t be vague about what you want or when you want to attain it. Make the goal measurable, break it into a small piece, and set a deadline.
Here is the last one…FORGIVE yourself when you stray from your plan. If you go out to eat and abandon your vow to not eat fried foods, forgive yourself and get back to your plan by the next meal. Don’t figure the whole day, weekend, or week is ruined and go on a bad food eating binge. If you bail on your exercise all week because you are busy, jump right back in first chance you get. Don’t feel like you have to exercise three extra times this week because you did not exercise last week. Getting back to your regular schedule is the best way to recover without overdoing it.
I know that these keys to success are basic, and I bet that you all have read these tips before in a magazine. We all possess the keys and knowledge to be healthier moms. Sometimes it is so easy to get caught up in our children, our husband, our house, our job that we forget about OURSELVES! When we decide to focus on improving ourselves (usually January 1st) it seems like we have to catch up for a whole year. Not this year. This year, I am going to improve myself all year with little goals that I can reach by incorporating them into my life. Hopefully, instead of beating myself up in December of 2005 for not keeping my New Years Resolutions, I will be toasting myself for all of my accomplishments! Have a Happy and Healthy New Year!
OPI: Subject: Have a Happy New Year Without the Resolutions