New Year, New Changes
As the Christmas tree needles fall and the last bit of pie is devoured, we start to realize the new year is fast approaching. We ask ourselves, “What will we do differently this coming year?” Or we make statements like “This is the year I am going to lose that weight.” Rest assured, we all have goals, and there is always room for improvement, but do we ask ourselves, “What is realistic?”
As a lover of all things health and fitness, I, too, struggle with the above questions and statements. What has helped me to be successful at reaching my goals has been to set them realistically, and then move the mark once they are achieved. If you look at losing that 20 pounds in five-pound increments, it doesn’t seem so overwhelming. If you look at that garage that needs to be organized and divide it into sections, it doesn’t seem so massive.
Goal Setting: Start with a checklist of the items you want to tackle in 2020. Prioritize the list with the most important things at the top and lowest priority at the bottom. Once this is set, start looking at the goal and break it up into quarters, like the example of 20 pounds mentioned above. Assign a start date and completion date that is realistic but still provides enough pressure to stay focused.
If weight loss is your goal, keep in mind that two pounds a week is considered healthy weight loss. So, maybe you plan to lose five pounds a month with the achievement set for four months. To some, this might be too much time allowed to achieve the goal, but with weight loss, it is important to try to make a lifestyle change rather than using a fad diet. Now that you have a sub-goal of five pounds per month set, you might feel less stressed and making healthy decisions will be easier.
Make sure to reward yourself at the end of each month—small things that help support the goal are best, such as a new pair of workout pants or a set of exercise bands. Keep it healthy and find rewards that support you toward the overall goal.
What happens if you don’t reach the goal? It’s ok! Breathe, re-group and re-evaluate, and try again!
Let 2020 be the year of setting yourself up for success, one attainable goal at a time. This will help achieve a lifestyle based on success rather than a slippery slope of setting goals too high and not being able to achieve them.
Jen Killpack, City of Medford