The new year often brings nutrition resolutions for many of us. This is great! Improving nutrition habits is something most people need and seeing so many people trying to do this is fantastic. However, I see a few general problems with a lot of these resolutions. First of all, a lot of the time, people attempt to make a very large change, or even multiple large changes at once. For example, I want to lose 20 pounds, stop eating all sugar, stop eating out, and only eat “whole foods". That is a lot to take on!! The second problem I see often is that people will make a resolution, but not come up with a plan to actually succeed at making the change. Losing 20 pounds is a great goal, however, with no specific plan for how you’re going to do that, you are destined to end up abandoning your goal quickly.
In our last post, we talked about the steps for achieving your goal. I’m going to highlight those again here:
First, set a realistic goal. If you want to stop eating all sugar, but right now you have 2 coffees with sugar in the morning, 2 sodas during the day and dessert most nights, this might not be a realistic goal to start. It is too big of a change!
Second, create a plan to stick to your goal. This means creating “behavior goals” that you will do every day (or every week), that will move you towards your goal. For example, if you’re trying to eliminate sugar, maybe you decide you will cut down to 1 soda every day for the next two weeks. Read our post on behavior goals from last week for more info.
Third, get accountability! Find a friend, fellow gym member, or a coach to help keep you on track! This is huge when you’re trying to stay focused.
Following these steps is an excellent idea for your nutrition goals this year. In addition, instead of trying to go for a huge, grand change. Start by making small consistently maintainable changes. Pick one small goal to start, and make it a behavior goal. Maybe this is as small as cutting out one soda a day, or adding a cup of veggies to every meal. This may seem like a lame resolution, but your chances of sticking to it are much higher. And seeing success helps motivate you to go after more success.
Pick one small goal at a time and focus on only that for two weeks! Most of us can’t consistently focus on too many new changes. By focusing on one little change at a time, we can build up to a larger amount of good habits that we do consistently. So, for the first two weeks, just start with one small easy change, like eating that cup of veggies at each meal. Then once you’ve done that consistently for two weeks add in something new like cutting out that second soda. By building up all these little good habits and practicing them consistently, you’ll end up with a big change you can actually maintain.
As you’re thinking about your nutrition goals for the year, come in and tell us about them! We’d love to help you anyway we can and we love seeing you succeed! :)