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Resolve to Make 2013 Different

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You are a few weeks in.  Resolutions have begun and you are hanging in there this year.

Here are a few tips to keep you on the right track.

Start with your mind. Most of us set goals, go gung ho, and then lose momentum and quit.  This year, make a conscious effort to figure out what motivates you more, fear of failure or the promise of reward.  Think of the last time you achieved something significant.  How did you feel?  What kept you motivated?  Was it your determination to not let someone down (fear of failure) or were you driven by the big payoff you would receive (promise of reward)?

Now, let’s take health and fitness resolutions and apply these two motivators. 

Step One:  Set clear goals.  You want to lose weight and feel great.  Why?  It is imperative that you can answer this question.  What are your reasons?  Once you have the answer, you can move mountains.  Whether you want to model a healthy lifestyle for your children, or you have a special event coming up, know your motivation.

Second step: Set realistic goals.  We’ve all seen the weight loss shows on TV.    But to think you can lose five, 10 or 15 pounds in a week is unrealistic and will merely set you up for Resolution Rejection!  A healthy weight loss goal is one to one-and-a-half pounds per week.  That is very doable, without being uncomfortable and torturous. 

Be sure to check with your physician before starting any weight loss or physical fitness program.  After you punch the “go” button, begin slowly.  If you are starting from scratch, begin by walking the dog three times a week.  Gradually add on to that. 

As you become more active, you’ll be amazed at the other changes you’ll make, totally on your own.  You’ll drink more water; you‘ll eat more veggies; you’ll drive past the fast food joint and instead see who wants to join you for a crisp evening walk. 

You’re on your way to healthier living!

The essential habits of a fit lifestyle are starting to kick in.  Why?   You’ve realized what’s important to you.  Armed with that knowledge, becoming more active just feels right.  Making better eating choices feels good.  Positive thoughts need to stay at the forefront.  Will you have set backs?  You bet you will!  But that’s ok; be kind to yourself and allow for the occasional slip-up.  It only becomes failure if you quit. 

Do you have friends or family that successfully changed their lives in one area or another?  Ask them how they did it.  Very often, you’ll hear they struggled for years.  But when they clearly decided they were done living like that, they changed, and it became easy.

It all starts with the mind.  The body will follow.  See yourself as you want to be.  If you loved the way you looked when you were a certain age, hang a picture from that time on your bathroom mirror.  Remember how you felt then, using as many senses as you can to recreate that memory. 

Did you always listen to a certain favorite song in the mornings as you got ready?  Find that song and start listening again.  Make the memory so vivid that you are there.  Now, apply those feelings to the now and the future.  Walk and talk as though you’ve already reached your goal. 

This isn’t hocus pocus kind of stuff.  It really works! 

Chani Overstreet is an NASM Certified Personal Trainer and co-owner of Strada Fitness & Wellness Center with her husband, Luke. Strada is a state-of-the-art fitness studio located at 3041 Churchill Drive, Suite 100, in Flower Mound, across from Lifetime Fitness. Call 972.330.4300 or visit www.StradaFitness.com for more information.

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