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Top 7 tips for sticking to your fitness and health resolutions this year


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As you wrote your new-year resolutions for 2023, did you also take a look back at your 2022 resolutions? If you didn’t do too well following through on your resolutions last year, you can take some comfort in knowing that you are actually in the majority. If that’s no solace at all, well then know that at least you resolved, and that alone makes you a whole lot closer to success than those who didn’t.


But of course, our readers are not going to be satisfied just knowing they are already knocking on the door of success - your story MUST BE one of success itself! So in this article, we’ll share with you a few tips on turning resolutions into reality. Our focus will be on fitness and health goals, but as you’ll see, whatever helps you achieve your fitness and health resolutions is not going to stop at that.

1.  Set specific, realistic, and meaningful goals

Your resolutions must have significance, but at the same time, you have to stand at least a realistic chance of achieving them. Otherwise, either you’ll be so discouraged you’ll want to throw in the towel from the get-go, or you’ll be wasting your precious time. On top of that, your resolutions should be specific, so that it will be easy to tell when you accomplish them.


That’s why it’s better to resolve to bring your weight down to 170 lbs (let’s say from 180 lbs today), instead of telling yourself to simply “eat fewer carbs and exercise more”. A specific target weight number paints a beautiful mental picture that fires you up. And while losing 10 pounds in a year is certainly achievable, people around you will notice that the health benefits are real.

2.  Make a plan for achieving your resolutions by taking into consideration the time and money needed

Now that your resolutions are set, it’s time to think about how you’ll go about them. This plan serves two purposes - it reminds you what to do and what to refrain from doing to achieve your stated goals. Provided you plan carefully, any unfeasible resolutions will also be exposed. Likewise, if you have been too easy on yourself when making your resolutions, careful planning will most likely reveal that by letting you know you can do more, possibly much more.


It is this plan that reminds you what to do on a day-to-day basis, not your list of resolutions. So, if you resolve to undergo a very thorough checkup and secure better health coverage this year, your plan will remind you to arrange your colonoscopy, cardiac imaging, and body check, and to call your insurance broker to explore your options, at the right time.

3.  Tell others or keep quiet about your resolutions depending on your personal style

Some people are more motivated when people around them know what they are trying to accomplish, while others feel more comfortable and focused when only they know about their plans.


There is no right or wrong, so whatever floats your boat. However, one undisputed benefit of letting more people know about your resolutions is that their input may well cause you to change your mind on certain aspects and thus refine your plans. For example, if you plan to relocate and end your current health coverage, a friend who has relevant experience may be able to convince you to take your time there because you may not be relocating for good.

4.  Don’t simply take out the fun, put the fun back in as well!

One common complaint about health advice is that it tends to take the fun out of life. Many people, knowingly or otherwise, have chosen to take a little bit more health risk to living life more to their liking.


Thus, one way to help yourself stick to your health resolutions is to pack as much fun into the healthy lifestyle as you possibly can. Is your doctor recommending that you cut down on red meat consumption? Then ask them if it’s okay to add more salmon and chicken to your diet (supposing you like salmon and chicken, that is). As they say, time really flies, especially when you are having a good time.

5.  Allow yourself to indulge a little occasionally

Speaking of putting the fun back in…what better way to do it than allowing yourself to indulge a little now and then? So even though red meat is not the recommended variety, enjoying a steak occasionally won’t do much harm (of course, ask your doctor about that first).


Having said that, there are many things that you should never indulge in, not even occasionally. For example, the health hazards of smoking are simply too numerous and serious, and second- and third-hand smoke has been proven to be harmful to the health of your family and other people around you too.

6.  Prioritize and, if necessary, scale back your resolutions

Things don’t always go as planned…well, make that things rarely go as planned! And that’s why it’s crucial that we know how to prioritize. Read your resolutions again, and identify which resolutions are the important ones. And which ones can be postponed if necessary? Indeed, even if you are likely to be able to stick to all of your resolutions, it’s still useful to know what your key resolutions are so that you can focus more on them. So highlight or put a star next to the “big ones” now!


Scaling back is another useful skill here. Many of us have an innate tendency to simply give up when it’s unlikely a goal can be achieved as originally envisioned, but the far better thing to do is to scale back, which is a bit like renegotiating with yourself. So, if it’s late October already and you are unlikely to weigh 170 lbs at year-end, how about setting 175 lbs as your new target? This new and realistic goal will fire you up once again.

7.  Remind yourself about the consequences of unhealthy habits now and then

We have all been educated about the potential health consequences of smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, living a sedentary lifestyle, etc. But why is it that so many people still don’t seem to care? The reasons are varied, but one of them is that for many people, their understanding of the health consequences is only at the “basic awareness” level.


It’s one thing to know and another thing to see. The behavior of many people can be changed if they actually see the consequences rather than just know about them, and that’s exactly the rationale behind putting repulsive photos on cigarette packs and other similar initiatives. If you sense your discipline is slacking a bit, it’s likely that seeing Internet videos on the consequences and how people’s lives can be affected will just be the booster dose you need.


May your 2023 be filled with joy and success!

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