I used to think that making resolutions for the new year was cliche and purposeless. What was the point in making the same promise every single year to “lose 15 pounds” and “exercise more”? I created these vague goals for myself but obviously lacked the motivation to follow them through. I have heard and read and seen countless stories about other people who’d make themselves the same promises that I did and lose steam around February or March (I don’t think I ever even saw my resolutions through to the end of January). Obviously, there is a right and a wrong way to make resolutions.
My first rule: my resolutions would have nothing to do with numbers. No weight goal, no calorie-counting. I’ve tried both of these strategies more times than I can count and neither has worked for me. Being healthy to me involves changing my lifestyle, not the number on a scale. That being said, my health-related goals might just help me lose the weight I’ve gained this winter.
My second rule: my resolutions need to be specific and attainable. What does “eat better” actually involve? What am I eating? How can I achieve that?
I know that these two rules seem to contradict themselves but stay with me.
I decided to make goals in three categories: personal, health, and professional. It’s only the 3rd, but so far I’ve found them manageable and valuable. These are my resolutions for 2012:
Walk the dog every day
Stop texting and driving (a horrible habit, I know)
Read 1 book a month (doesn’t apply to the “no numbers” rule)
Run a 1/2 marathon (more on this later)
Set weekly fitness goals
Keep a food and exercise journal
Eat more vegetables (not specific, but this is just a general rule I try to follow on a daily basis so I added it)
Get a job
Build up my savings account
Get a new car (eventually)
I wrote my goals on the first page of my journal to remind myself of them. I left room to add more if I think of any.
Keeping a journal and recording the food I eat and my workouts has been very helpful in encouraging me to be mindful of what I eat. It also makes planning what I eat and what I do for workouts much simpler.
And have been very honest in recording what I ate.
While I’ve only walked Cash once in the past three days and haven’t done any reading yet this month, I am very happy with these resolutions and hope to see them all through to 2013.