Persist until you succeed!
Happy New Year from ONIE! It’s a little over two weeks into 2014 and hopefully it’s been a good start for you so far. For us, it’s been a busy time. We have a lot to do and are excited for our upcoming projects. The start of the year is a great time because it marks a new beginning and people are energized and ready to work on their New Year’s resolutions. It would be safe to guess that “eating healthy” and “being more physically active” are top resolutions for your new year. We know being healthy is a challenge and sticking to these particular resolutions is not an easy task. But, it’s definitely possible!
As with all resolutions, it’s important for them to be doable. Consider what will be easy for you to do. It might not be realistic to say "I’m going to exercise 2 hours every day" if you work more than 40 hours or don’t usually engage in physical activity 3 or more times a week. It will be much easier to start out doing 30 minute sessions twice a week and build up to the recommended level for adults, which is 150 minutes a week of moderate activity. Once you've settled on a goal, define it further. Ask yourself how you can break your goal into smaller, easy to do steps. Be specific about your steps. Doing this will help you keep focus on each step and avoid situations that may lead you to break your goal. If you are looking to become more active and a better eater this year, below are several small actions you can take towards these goals. Park far from the store/work entrance and walk. Take advantage of the extra distance to get more physical activity in your day.
- Take a break from sitting at work or watching TV at home. Get up and move around. Consider doing jumping jacks, squats, or leg lunges.
- Eat breakfast. Having breakfast can help you be more energetic throughout the day.
- Try to follow the USDA’s MyPlate recommendations for each meal. Make half your plate fruits and vegetables and at least half of your grains whole grains. For more information, visit http://www.choosemyplate.gov/food-groups.
It takes lots of time and determination to achieve any resolution. There will be many hurdles to jump over in the next 350 days, which might make us want to give up. Don't be too hard on yourself if you miss a workout day or forget to include a vegetable in your meal or eat that tasty chocolate bar. You might have lost that battle, but not the war. Get up and keep going. Think back on your goal, your reasons, and look towards the benefits you will reap.