New Year, New You!

New Year, New You!

We’re at a point now when New Year’s resolutions, especially those pertaining to health and fitness – eating/drinking better, exercising are very trendy.
The concept is great, putting it into action maybe not so much.

The reason being is that people often (with the best intentions) set too lofty, unattainable goals in a noble attempt to begin righting all the ‘wrongs’ from last month (if you read the 12 tips of Christmas blog post you’ll know I don’t really think they’re wrongs). The fact is when looking to create healthier habits like those we come up with in New Year’s resolutions, we need to start slowly.

Don’t attempt to do too much all at once. Completely overhauling your diet to the point where it resembles nothing of your previous dietary habits or increasing your exercise volume by 500% will mean you’re doomed to fail. Why? Because it’s not sustainable, you can’t be consistent with it, you can’t adhere to it, and you rely on the finite resource that is willpower. Sure you might be able to keep it up for a few weeks maybe but the overload to your body and brain will find you pretty quickly.

Instead, look to make small positive changes to your habits (I’ll outline some below) and build on them over time, after all this isn’t a quick fix, quick fixes don’t last very long.

Make them almost ‘too easy’ or ‘too simple’ because then you’ll nail them, day in, day out, and you’ll be constantly moving forward. If you need some help, then get it, hire someone to help you but beware of anyone who has that quick fix mentality themselves.

Consider these ‘small’ changes to adopt over the coming weeks, not necessarily all of them all at once, think about building on your habit base.
Ask yourself “How ready, willing and able am I to adopt this habit?”

* Eat a serving of protein with your breakfast, or an extra serving during the day.
* Eat slowly, take the time to chew, savour and experience your food (you’ll end up eating less).
* Look for opportunities to be more active outside of your scheduled exercise (see the NEAT portion of the December blog post).
* Switch to diet sodas, or better yet, water.
* Slowly increase your exercise volume over time. If you’re starting with an exercise baseline of 0 then try a fast walk a few times a week and get into lifting some weights.
* Add an extra daily serving of vegetables or two each week.

Rome wasn’t built in a day…consistency is key, stick with it and you’ll soon see the results.

Happy New Year!

By Bodyfirst Nutritionist Brian Ó HÁonghusa