New Year’s Resolutions; Why do we give up so quickly?


You may be sitting reading this on your new IPad wearing your new jumper, smelling delightfully of your new after shave/ perfume but feeling a little miserable due to the January slump. The dark mornings make it difficult to get out of bed and the weather causes you to fantasise about getting back under the duvet as soon as possible.

Fear not lovely people, the days are staying lighter for longer, daffodils are starting to push their way through the soil and spring is just around the corner. I know that the winter can drag on but I am assured by friends who emigrate abroad that after the initial novelty of perpetual summer they actually miss the change of seasons. If it wasn’t for winter you wouldn’t be able to snuggle in front of the fire, have an excuse to buy a new coat/boots, enjoy a football match clasping a steaming cup of tea, play in the snow….see, there are positives!

It is at this time of year that we think about making changes to our lives; weight loss, giving up smoking, cutting back on alcohol; the list goes on.  It’s great to be making health changes but maybe we should also make a resolution to develop a better relationship with the body we’ve got too? We should focus on the things we do like about ourselves rather than focusing on the bits we don’t.

We could resolve to dress according to our shape and show off our best features, not to try and look like a celebrity and strive to wear what they do just because they are in the media and that’s what we think we should be wearing!

We should resolve to try a new food each week. Introducing new fruits and vegetables into our daily food plan can make sure that we eat all the macro/micro nutrients and vitamins and minerals we need. Don’t forget that our taste buds change s we get older. What we once thought was disgusting actually can taste nice now so give it a go.

We should resolve to do something for someone else; give blood, take part in a charity fun run or simply take time to talk to someone who is elderly or lonely.

If you have over-indulged over the Christmas season and are finding that there is more of you than there was late 2014 (polite way of saying you’re reading this with your stomach resting on your knees!) then this is a good time to think about weight loss and getting fit. The choccies and other goodies should all be eaten now so temptation will not be a problem!

If you have stepped into a leisure centre in December and then again in January you will be aware of the considerable increase in participating people. You will also be aware, indeed you may be one of the people who arrive at the centre in new trainers/sports outfit/water bottle, full of enthusiasm and dedication to lose weight and become super fit within a month! Come the end of January with barely a mark on the trainers you have given up, motivation gone and a doughnut on your plate.

Why do people drop out and not succeed with their resolutions? I shall tell you…. you set yourselves unrealistic goals. If you want to lose a stone in weight it isn’t going to happen overnight. The extra weight took a while to get there; it’s going to take a time to get rid of it.

Set yourself SMART goals.

S – Specific. The goal must relate to something that you want to do; to lose body fat and increase muscle mass, be able to take part in an exercise session, to be able to go for a walk or run. Do something that you enjoy, not what everyone else is doing.

M- Measureable. This means that the gaols must be quantifiable and stated in figures; lose 3% of body fat, be able to complete a 60 minute exercise session without gasping for breath, to walk / run 5k. Simply saying to lose weight or get fit isn’t measureable and you won’t know when you’ve reached your goal.

A – Achievable. This means that the goal is humanly possible for you to do! Losing 3 stone in a month isn’t achievable, neither is a complete beginner likely to be able to do a marathon after 2 months of training. If you are over ambitious with your goal setting it can place stress on you to achieve them and when feel that you have failed you will stop trying. It is much better to set smaller goals so that you have a sense of achievement when you reach it.

R- Realistic. The goals should fit with your wants and needs. It’s best if you set them as then it is something that you want to do, not your fitness instructor or anyone else forcing you to do something you don’t want to do.

T- Time Set yourself a time scale for reaching your goals. Leave yourself plenty of time. If you are going on holiday in the summer now is a great time to start getting in to shape, not two weeks before you go!

If you need help to lose weight and get fit speak to your Fitness Consultant who will help you to make healthy choices and guide you to the best activity for you.

Book in for a Boditrax scan at one of the Stevenage Leisure facilities to see what your body composition is – see previous blog  “ what are you made of? Body composition”

There are many local fantastic organisations who can help you to quit smoking and drink less if you need support.

Don’t give up after the first blip! We are human; we will fall off the cart at some point. Don’t think, oh well, I’ve blown it now, may as well give up. Just get back on track and start over.

Good luck with whatever you are aiming to achieve, I would love to hear your stories so drop me a line and let me know what you are doing!

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