It is that time of year when we all reflect on our prior successes, but also on the things we may have neglected to achieve in the past year. A lot of times, these regrets pertain to our own physical and emotional  well being, so a lot of New Year’s resolutions are directed towards being healthier, exercising more, perhaps losing some weight…

Here are some easy to follow steps to make 2013 a year when you do make your resolutions stick.

  1. Set realistic and attainable goals: instead of focusing just say on losing weight, determine to be more fit overall. This can mean pushing yourself to do a certain amount of push-ups, working out at least 3 times per week, taking your dog for longer walks/runs. Once you are less concerned with a specific outcome, you are more likely to make exercising fun and reach your goals.
  2. Acknowledge your successes, no matter how small the victory may seem. We always seem to punish ourselves when we fault. Instead, think about rewarding yourself every time your reach a small benchmark. This will make exercising fun and you will be more likely to commit to it.
  3. Commit to be better, not perfect: as much as we may want to revamp our lifestyle, and start with a fresh, clean slate by doing everything just right, sometimes things happen to get in our way of success. Make small improvements on a weekly basis to better yourself rather than trying to be perfect.
  4. Consider making lifestyle changes, rather than say losing 15 lbs. We all sometimes get hang up on a goal that we believe will make us happier…instead, change the way you go about eating and exercising. If you are active and eat a nutritious and healthy diet, you are much more likely to reach and maintain an optimal weight, rather than simply focusing on reaching an idealized number.
  5. Adjust your diet. Even though exercising may help tone and burn body fat, what you take into your body is equally important for your success. Gather simple, clean recipes that you like and expand your dietary intake with new nutritious foods.
  6. Find something you like to do and you are much more likely to succeed. As a former 2 pack a day smoker (13 years), that detested exercising, I can assure you that there is something out there for each one of us that we may enjoy. So try it, find it, and have a blast doing it!

May 2013 be the year of a happier and healthier you!