Choosing simple resolutions can help you keep them all year long
Have you ever managed to keep a New Year’s resolution all year long? Most people find this hard to do, so we’ve come up with a list of 5 resolutions that are easy to follow, and can help you develop healthier habits in your life.
Tip #1. Step it out!
If keeping in shape is hard for you, and going to the gym never seems to happen, you might want to start smaller. Walking is a great exercise for people who want to get in shape but may not have the commitment to stick with a regular gym routine. It’s also the perfect add-on exercise for people who already get regular exercise. Here are some tips to walk your way to fitness.
- Start out with 1 mile per day (about 20 minutes), and if that’s really easy, increase to 2 miles each day (about 40 minutes). When it feels right, increase to 3 or 4 miles.
- Walk up the stairs instead of using the elevator.
- Don’t take the closest parking space possible. Instead, park farther away and walk to your destination.
- Make walking your social event—arrange to meet a friend and walk together.
- Walk your kids to school if you can.
- Pick one time of the day when you take a 10-minute walk, such as after dinner every day.
- Use walking as an excuse to listen to your music or podcasts.
- Get a pedometer and set daily goals.
Tip #2. Eat fish at least once per week.
Research has shown that people who eat fish several times per week tend to have a lower risk of heart disease. Eating fish three times per week would be ideal, but if that’s a resolution that you will break, then try for once a week. Some fish are high in mercury and should not be eaten frequently (albacore tuna, swordfish, mackerel, orange roughy, halibut, shark, marlin, and fresh tuna). The following are safer to eat:
- Wild and Alaska Salmon
- Lake trout
Tip #3. Trade one bad eating habit for one good eating habit.
Rather than trying to go cold turkey and eliminate all of your bad eating habits, just pick one habit and try to quite it for a week. The next week, choose a different habit. This won’t be a miracle diet, but it will simply remove a few bad foods and introduce a few good ones. Here are some suggestions for substitutions.
- Craving sweets? Eat a banana with peanut butter, or some dried fruit.
- Craving a soda? Drink unsweetened seltzer water instead.
- Craving something crunchy? Try some baby carrots.
- Craving salty snacks? Eat a small handful of almonds or walnuts instead.
- Craving takeout? Try a Healthy Choice or Lean Cuisine version of the same food.
Tip #4. Get better sleep.
Do you always feel tired in the morning? Do you always feel like you need more sleep? There may be ways of improving the quality of your sleep, as well as ways to add a little more time. Getting good sleep can make a huge difference in your life, and can even give you more energy for exercise and fewer cravings for unhealthy foods. Try these tips:
- Try to go to bed at roughly the same time every night.
- Do something relaxing before bed, and avoid stressful thoughts or conversations.
- If your partner is noisy, try a white noise machine.
- Create an atmosphere in your room that helps you sleep. This might include soft lighting, room-darkening curtains, and a clean, clutter-free environment.
- Even if you are tired, try not to nap if it will disturb your nighttime sleep.
- Stay away from alcohol, caffeine, and large meals too close to sleep.
- Turn off your screens at least 30 minutes before bedtime to allow your mind time to relax.
Tip #5. Incorporate at stress buster into your day.
Living under constant stress can be detrimental to your health. Your body needs time to decompress and relax. If you feel like your life is too stressful, make a pledge to yourself that you will set aside 10 minutes each day for yourself to relax. Here are some easy ways to work in a little relaxation:
- At a time of stress, take 3-5 slow, deep breaths.
- Get some fresh air by stepping outside to clear your head.
- Stretch and change your posture, to avoid muscle tension.
- Find 10 minutes to listen to music, read a book, or sit down with a cup of coffee or tea.
- Get a 20-minute chair massage to relieve stess and tension.
Tip #6. Get a checkup
This is an easy resolution that can truly improve your health. If you are someone who hasn’t been to the doctor in years, then please take this resolution seriously. Call your doctor and schedule a physical. Medical checkups are important, because they can uncover symptoms of serious conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, or heart disease. The sooner you get treatment for these conditions, the better!
These New Year’s tips are provided by Branford Hall Career Institute. Our school offers 10 career-focused training programs, ranging from Professional Medical Assistant to Culinary Arts to Massage Therapy. With locations in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, and New Jersey, we offer many options for you to begin a new career path. And what better New Year’s resolution than starting a career training program? To learn more, fill out our simple online form.