Nearly half of us make resolutions in January, but fewer than 1 in 10 of us stick to those plans. If you’re looking for a helping hand for your New Year fitness resolution, read on. We’ll take a look at the most common reasons folks fail to keep their resolve and offer solutions to help you stay the course to succeed in 2020.
Making SMART New Year resolutions
If you're still pondering your New Year's resolution for 2020, great! Rather than arbitrarily picking some lofty goal and setting yourself up to fail, you can make a SMART plan to succeed. Seriously, you’re more likely to keep a New Year resolution when it is:
In practice, this means that instead of resolving to ‘eat more healthily’ or ‘do more exercise’, you get serious and smart with your plan. So, pick one specific goal (or, at most, two!), such as:
- Switching one can of pop for a cup of green tea every day
- Eating an extra piece of fruit every day
- Getting off the bus one stop early on your morning commute
- Taking the stairs instead of the escalator or lift at the end of your work day.
See how these goals are also measurable and time-sensitive? And, for most of us, they’re also entirely realistic and achievable. You’re not signing yourself up for a marathon, committing to ‘get more steps’ or ‘eat more fruits and veggies’.
Behaviours become habits when they’re simple and easy to incorporate into your daily routine. It also helps when they’re cost-free, don’t require much time, and don’t push you too far outside your comfort zone. Trying to change everything overnight is almost always doomed to failure. Instead, you’ll probably see that one seemingly small change snowballs into bigger changes down the road.
Make your resolution manageable and memorable, and let friends, family, and colleagues know. That way, they can help keep you accountable. Hey, they might even feel inspired and join in!
Let it snow… ball!
Now, let’s say you’re acing your new morning routine and are chowing down on your extra veggies. What next? If you’re up for another challenge, think about a springtime resolution too. Something like:
- Choosing salad instead of fries as a side when eating out
- Walking 100 steps extra every day to reach an average of 10,000 daily
- Being a volunteer dog walker once a week at your local shelter.
Once you've conquered one mountain, pick up another resolution, hot on the heels of your success. You’ll feel more motivated and keep the momentum going! And, again, let those around you know your resolutions. There’s nobody better than your kids to remind you to pick salad instead of fries, ideally in their loudest voice for the whole restaurant to hear.
Don’t Dwell on Missed Opportunities
While it’s great to hold yourself accountable, don’t beat yourself up if you don’t make your goal one day. Remember that every day is another opportunity to succeed. So, you skimped on the fruit Monday. No need to do the same Tuesday! Get back on the horse and start a new streak of successes.
Now, we should add one note of caution. If you’re starting to exercise for the first time in a while, or are planning to significantly increase your physical activity, talk to your health care practitioner first. Heed medical advice and go slow and steady; don’t make the mistake of massively overdoing it at the gym in the first week of January.
And finally, consider a little support from natural health products, such as Beet IT Sport Nitrate 3000. Every bottle contains seven servings of concentrated beetroot juice, with each 35 ml dose providing 400 mg of natural dietary nitrate. Dilute each serving with 150 ml of water, or add to a smoothie, yoghurt, or other food an hour or so before exercise.
Beet juice is not only a fantastic natural food colouring, it’s also delicious and nutritious. As a major source of dietary nitrate, beet juice can help increase levels of nitric oxide in the blood. This supports healthy blood pressure and cardiovascular function, meaning your body is better able to deliver vital oxygen and nutrients to muscles and carry away metabolic waste products, all of which helps support better athletic performance!
So, this year, feel the beet and make SMART New Year’s resolutions!
Kapil, V., et al. (2015). Dietary nitrate provides sustainewd blood pressure lowering in hypertensive patients: a randomized, phases 2, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Hypertension, Feb: 65(2), 320-7.
Velmurugan, S., et al. (2016). Dietary nitrate improves vascular function in patients with hypercholesterolemia: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Am J Clin Nutr, Jan;103(1), 25-38.