The problem with New Years resolutions
A new year, a new you. That’s what we always promise. It’s a good way to convince ourselves that we’re capable of change as we wolf down another Quality Street and struggle for the TV remote.
Psychologically speaking, we respond well to the notion of goals and we count down to the start with anticipation, even as we shove our hand back in the chocolate tin. It’s as if knowing we’re going to start next week is half the work done already. Think about it, how many times have you said, ‘the diet starts on Monday’?
The problem is always momentum. How do we follow through and actually achieve the targets we set ourselves? It’s no surprise that around 30% of people who sign up to the gym in January, quit by February and generally around 80% of overall resolutions have been abandoned by the second month of the year.
Setting better goals
Goals can be hard to achieve. This is why it’s better to break them down into more manageable tasks. Simply aiming to “Lose weight” or “be more healthy” are big, vague achievements to set for yourself. But if you look at them in more detail and examine the smaller changes you can implement to your daily routines to get there, you’ll smash your goals.
Try these tricks to a healthier you in 2020.
Break it down
The best place to start with a big goal is to break it down. Think about what you want to achieve and what you are going to do to get there. Is there a time limit? Are there any barriers? What are some of the quick wins?
Set smaller milestones along the way to your ultimate goal and acknowledge them as you tick them off. That sense of accomplishment will keep you fuelled and fired up to stay on track.
Hiit me up
If you’re looking to get active and burn some Christmas calories, try HIIT.
High Intensity Interval Training or HIIT is an extremely effective method of exercising which delivers relatively quick results for short bursts of exercise. HIIT is perfect if you are time poor, requires little to no equipment and can be done at home. We love these simple set from Self https://www.self.com/story/a-sweaty-24-minute-cardio-workout-you-can-do-in-your-living-room
Strike a balance
Post Christmas it’s not unusual to look back and realise that most of December’s diet consisted of cheese, chocolate and alcohol – Tis the season after all. To get back into the swing in 2020, it’s important to make sure you are getting plenty of fruit and vegetables, wholegrains and lean protein.
After a rich, candy laden few weeks it’s a good idea to stabilise your blood sugars to curb the cravings that could sabotage your January efforts.
Sugar? Shake it off
Speaking of sugar, you probably don’t want to know just how many teaspoons of the stuff you’ve had in the past month.
Draw a line under December and think about incorporating more natural sweetness into your diet going forward. Porridge or overnight oats with berries or banana or natural yoghurt with a drizzle of honey or agave is a great start to the day.
Cutting down on sugar is hard. It’s a pretty addictive substance and, after having so much of it at Christmas, it’s difficult to go cold turkey. If you find yourself really struggling, try to keep your goals front and centre. The craving for a chocolate will pass and you’ll proud you didn’t cave in.
Trying to make changes to your body? Don’t forget to look after your mind. Mindfulness has been a buzzword for a few years now but not without good reason. Self care has become a priority when it comes to mental health but it’s also useful when it comes to goal setting.
Being in tune with your moods, needs and emotions means you are more receptive to understanding how to achieve your goals. Food and feelings are closely linked and we often reward or console ourselves with treats. Being mindful, about both what you’re eating and why, can set you on a path to making much more healthy and informed choices.
Get intel on your intolerances
One of the things that can hamper us in our quest to get healthy is the food that doesn’t agree with us.
With almost half of the UK population living with food intolerances, it’s not surprising that you may seem to struggle from time to time.
From bloating and IBS to fatigue, migraine and respiratory problems like asthma, food intolerances affect us physically in a number of ways that can impact our attempts to get healthy.
Getting to the bottom of your specific food intolerance profile is a great way to understand the particular foods working for and against you. Armed with that knowledge, you can make choices that fuel you rather than fight you.
To discover your food intolerances, try our simple home to lab test for fast results.