6 New Year's Resolutions You Can Make Last


I am not a fan of New Year’s Resolutions. I think it puts too much unwanted pressure on us. You aren’t doing something for an ENTIRE year and now all of a sudden you are expected to implement it into your schedule IMMEDIATELY?!?! Does my excessive usage of exclamation points and all caps stress you out as much as New Year’s Resolutions stress me out? Let’s take a step back.

What if we lived in a world where all those trendy things we do on January 1st (…..January 2nd because: hangovers) could happen effortlessly in our daily lives? I’m not talking about going from McDonald’s to chia seed pudding in 3 seconds. Or even binge watching Netflix to running an ultra marathon. Let me help shine a light on a middle path. Here are my 6 New Year's Resolutions you can gently build into your daily routines without having to declare unyielding and permanent loyalty to the house of “Gym Salad Smoothie Run Run Hungry Skinnytown.”

  1. “I am going to lose 15 lbs”

    This may be the most common resolution out there. We all want to lose weight. The media tells us our bodies aren’t good enough, so we listen. And we WANT to be good enough. Hence, the 15 lb transformation. I am sorry to say that no matter how much weight we lose, we still won’t be Beyonce (love you Queen Bey). But I have some great news for you: YOU are still allowed to be beautiful, strong, and important even if you AREN’T Beyonce.


I am going to love my body unconditionally.

If you don't know how to do that yet, start by telling yourself three positive things about your body before you can say anything negative. Remind yourself that healthy eating habits, comfortable exercise, and a positive attitude will get you to the body image that makes you happy. Love is patient, love is kind.


2. “I am going to go on a diet”


If you plan to quit your eating habits “cold turkey” ( :D ) then welcome to a salad bowl full of sadness, regrets, and disappointment. It is ok to want to eat healthier, especially if you are currently frequenting fast food restaurants and have a soft drink addiction. You have taken your first steps towards a healthier you just by wanting it.


I am going to eat intuitively

Don't use the word 'diet.' Eradicate it from your vocabulary. Sorry, everyone else messed it up for us by misusing the word. Instead of attempting to eat perfectly healthy in 2019, commit to eating intuitively. That means allowing yourself to have "cheat foods" every now and then because you aren't a robot. How about asking yourself to eat a vegetable at every meal, and cutting back your soft drinks to once a week. Eventually you may find you don't crave them at all. Baby steps for longevity!


3. “I am going to get in shape”


If by shape you mean you’d like to be a rhombus instead of a trapezoid, that is probably easier to change then going from minimal fitness to regular exercise. Establishing a fitness lifestyle takes time and requires the elusive intrinsic motivation we humans have sought after for hundreds of years. So if you aren’t fresh off of a divorce, trying to be a Navy Seal, or attempting to prove your overly-critical friend SO WRONG about your pant size, motivation might be in short supply.


I am going to spend more time with people who care about fitness & health

Before you sign up for that annual gym membership, take out a calendar. Look at your weekly schedule and tentatively pencil in when you could physically make it to the gym. THEN pick up the phone and call as many friends as you can to see if they might have those times free as well. This goes for all fitness activities, not just the gym. Working out with others improves the quality of the experience and adds accountability to the act. BONUS TIP for budding triathletes: join a masters swim team, a local run group, or a cycling group with a friend. Even if you don't end up going regularly, the individual experiences will enrich your life and expose you to different ways of approaching fitness.


4. “I am going to take risks”

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As someone once nicknamed ‘No Fun Katie',’ this one makes me LOL ALOT. Asking yourself to take more risks is asking for a full-blown personality transplant. Some humans just don’t take risks, and that is perfectly ok. Are you an introverted recluse who doesn't leave the house? Ok sure, let’s get you to take a risk. Will you live outdoors or take up a career traveling the world to give speeches on how fun it is to travel and talk to people? Probably not. Again, let me say it: this. is. ok.


I am going to adjust how much value I place in feeling comfortable.

Comfort. Sitting on the fuzziest, warmest couch of life that spoon feeds you Nutella and tells you everything is going to be ok. Sounds like something out of a ‘Black Mirror’ episode to me. A modern horror story. Comfort is trending as the new pursuit of happiness. But comfort and happiness are not the same thing. Happiness is often found through deep soul searching, on the other end of tragedy, and at the bottom of the darkest pits. Happiness may also be found at children’s birthday parties and snuggling fluffy puppies. I admit it, you can find it a lot of places LOL. So for those trying to take more risks, let’s start with finding the edges of your comfort. Because getting uncomfortable more often might give you a greater reward than jumping off a plane or quitting your job to try that traveling gig I mentioned above. Do one thing that you feel is safe but might make you uncomfortable this week. Try it. If you don’t see any benefits from it, trash it. Try again next week.


5. “I am going to bed earlier”

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This is admirable. How many sleeps studies have we seen by now that stress the importance of getting a solid 8 hours each night? I feel like even toddlers would say “well duh.” It is not a matter of wanting to get good sleep, it is more a question of where to make the time. Building time for real, restful sleep into your schedule is hard. But most good things in life come with some struggle. Proactive is not just a face wash people. It is a lifestyle.


I am going to prioritize my health

If you work long hours, have a wonky schedule, or suffer from insomnia, you may want to rearrange the building blocks of your week. Sometimes it isn’t that difficult to move some things around to make sure you are prioritizing your bed time. Cut out high stress activities that occur right before your bedtime. This might mean answering emails the next day, politely declining the last minute 10PM ‘grab drinks’ invite, etc. If you are a nurse that works on-call or late nights (for example) you will need to think ahead. Plan your weekly sleep schedule accordingly, and don’t feel guilty if it isn’t perfect each time. Be ok with turning down late night activities if you don’t feel rested. Good people who love you will understand.


6. “I am going to run a marathon”

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Woah. For anyone who picks this as their New Year’s Resolution, send me some of your good juju because that is a lofty, stratospheric goal. Let’s pretend the person with this resolution does NOT have a running background. Maybe they have run a 5k, once. And they own a pair of cool Nike trainers…….aaaaaaand their aunt bought them a FitBit for Christmas. They are ready, right?


I am going to learn more about running

Burn out is real in the running world. “Burning out” can happen from excessive fatiguing of the body and mind when tackling a substantial training load. If you want to run a marathon, do it for the right reasons. You are inspired by marathon running as a sport. You have found that running makes you happy and you want to explore it further. You believe that running a marathon is a unique and exciting challenge that will improve your quality of life. Yeah, those are GOOD STUFF!!! If you don’t know much about running, try out our good friend Mr. Google. Most articles online, although just surface information, aren’t utter garbage. Ask a friend you know who runs a lot what books/articles they recommend. GO WATCH A MARATHON. Notice how the elite runners move. Ask questions. Familiarize yourself with the task at hand. And if you are still pumped about running your very own marathon, start the process with a goal 5k, 10k, and a half marathon. These distances are great training efforts and will get you that much closer to your main goal. “I just felt like running.” That will be you.

Katie Godeclifestyle, training, health