By Riham Shamseddine
It is that time of year again: the season of special festivities! We all spend our holidays surrounded by our loved ones and friends and of course, not to mention good food! This is just the tradition. Don’t we all have a long list of New Year’s resolutions and one that most commonly tops that list is to “lose weight.” Still, what will happen to all those extra pounds we may pile on during this period of time? It is always good to have a to-do-list or plan, but what’s even better is to be able to apply this plan for a healthier you in 2014.
Here are 5 tips on how to plan your coming year:
- Set achievable goals with a deadline. Deadlines work best, but make sure you are realistic with your goal-setting. Once done with the first goal, move to the next one.
- Keep a diary of what’s going on. This will help you pin point the weak points.
- Enjoy what you are doing. Don’t do it because you have to, do it because you want to.
- Reward yourself when your goal is achieved. Don’t reward yourself with food; rather buy yourself something you’ve always wanted. That would keep you motivated.
- The same works for your health resolution! It’s time for you to get rid of all those bad habits and start adopting a healthy lifestyle. It’s always good to start with a small change and then move onto bigger ones.
Here is a Top 10 List of Resolutions for a Healthier YOU
1. Start your day right with a hearty breakfast! It is the most important meal of the day and will help kick start your metabolism. You’ll feel less hungry during the day so you’ll eat smaller portions for your next meals.
2. Five a day: That’s for your fruits and veggies. Choose your favorite fruits and vegetables and have five servings a day. Choose more the fresh ones more often, and try to make a rainbow of colors to make sure you’re benefiting from all the different vitamins.
3. Keep a record! Jot down what you are eating and drinking onto a food diary with the help of an application on your smart phone or just write them down on a diary booklet.
4. Pack healthy snacks wherever you go. You will feel less hungry, and consume less unhealthy snacks. Try vegetables sticks, raw and unsalted mixed nuts and fresh fruits.
5. Eat from a plate and not from a container. This will help you control your portions.
6. Practice smart food swaps. Change from full fat to low fat products, switch to whole-grains instead of refined ones.
7. Plan ahead. Prepare your meals the night before to avoid temptations of ordering unhealthy meals the next day.
8. Allow yourself occasional treats but in moderation.
9. Use your tablet or smart phone and watch TV an hour less every day. Use this hour for an exercise routine of your choice. Getting active will change your world.
10. Find yourself an exercise pal. This will encourage you to commit more to an exercise routine. Always consult with a physician prior to starting any exercise routine.
Last but not least, take your New Year’s resolution seriously and don’t give up easily. It is a “year resolution”, not just a month or two. Do what you are doing with love, and you will be able to get the best out of it.