Popular New Year’s Resolutions
(according to USA.gov and About.com)
1. Lose weight
2. Manage debt
3. Save money
4. Get a better job
5. Get fit
6. Eat right
7. Spend more time with loved ones
8. Get a better education/learn something new
9. Drink less alcohol
10. Quit smoking
11. Reduce stress
12. Volunteer and help others
13. Get organized
Well, what do you know…lookie what shows up on the list a whopping THREE times!
That’s right, losing weight, getting fit and eating right.
And since chances are pretty good losing weight or getting in shape is also at the top of YOUR New Year’s Resolution list this year, it’s a perfect time for this installment of Fitness Friday.
Did you know in the last 30 years, there have been over 10, 000 diet plans published?
Did you also know that 90% of people who start a “diet” fail to achieve their goal?
In fact, about 50 million people begin a new diet each year, and 47.5 million of those people regain all or more of the weight they lost while dieting.
Why is that?
Because diets don’t work.
You’ve heard it a million times, but there is still something in you that hopes there will be some quick fix to your fitness woes, isn’t there!
Dieting is about depriving your body of food. But God created you to NEED food, just like you need oxygen.
Food is not the enemy.
Food is essential.
It is a good thing.
Think of dieting like going underwater and holding your breath.* Eventually, you have to come up. And when you do, you gasp and inhale all you can. It’s the same way when you go without eating. No matter how strong your willpower is, eventually you will give in and eat…and probably binge and gain weight. Then you’ll feel like a failure, and you’ll think something is wrong with you—you must be weak, you must be bad. You must be the exception to every diet plan out there, because they never work for you.
I want this to be the year you succeed.
I know you can because millions of others have, by making small lifestyle changes. The key to fitness has nothing to do with starving and dieting. It has everything to do with
1.Feeding your body the right foods in the right amounts
2.And moving and strengthening your body.
So let’s all agree today that if we have fitness goals for the New Year,
it will NOT include “going on a diet.”
If you have a significant amount of weight to lose (more than 10 pounds) and you don’t exercise, I would recommend you make some very small but very specific goals.
Here are some suggestions:
1. Drink at least 64 ounces of water a day.
2. Cut sodas out of your diet completely (even diet sodas). If you drink several a day, decide to replace one or two a day with water or green tea and go from there.
3.Replace fast food with fresh sandwiches, salads or soup
5. Cut all hydrogenated oils out of your diet. Don’t know what contains hydrogenated oils? Read the ingredients. But note: companies are only required by law to list “trans fat” if it has more than .5 grams per serving. Therefore, even if it says “0 grams trans fat” on the nutrition per serving table, it may still contain trans fat. For more info on trans fat and what foods contain it, read this report
from the Food and Drug Administration.
6. Add a serving of fruit or vegetables to every meal and every snack.
7. Change from full fat dairy to low fat or fat free.
8.Go vegetarian one day a week.
9. Change from white bread, pasta and rice to whole grain.
10. Cut out second helpings, unless it’s veggies.
11. Add one day (30 minutes) of cardiovascular exercise to whatever you are currently doing.
12. If you already do cardio at least 3 days a week, add 1 or 2 days a week of weight training to your routine.
Depending where you are on the fitness/health spectrum, you may want to only choose one of these things and do it for a whole month before adding another. Or if you are ready to tackle a few of them, go for it. But whatever you do, make sure you do it for at least 30 days before you add anything else new. It takes about that long to form new habits.
And remember…this is about lifestyle changes, not dieting.
If you have 10 pounds or less to lose, or you just want to get out of your fitness plateau, I’ll talk specifically to you next week, so come back!
One major element to success in fitness and weight loss is accountability. Make sure you tell other supportive people about your goals.
*I read this analogy in Eating for Life, by Bill Phillips and I think it’s fabulous!