3 Healthy Lifestyle Tips for the New Year

Every new year we promise ourselves that we will eat better, exercise more, lose weight, and just start taking better care of ourselves.

And every new year we end up either never starting or never finishing the path to such goals.

My belief is that it is HOW we go about change which consistently leads to failure

(and ultimately a feeling of hopelessness after so many failures).

After failing so many times myself and seeing so many others fail (following the traditional path to weight loss and building a healthier lifestyle) I have found what I believe to be the key path to successful long-term change in our health behaviors.

It involves no diets, no gimmicks, no excessive exercise regimens, no quick fixes, nor anything else which continues to lead to failure in the long-term.

The simplicity and practical nature of this path makes it one of the easiest paths you’ll ever find.

Please note the “iest” part of “easiest”. I don’t want to mislead anyone into thinking there is any easy path to long-term change.

But I truly believe that this is one of the easiest paths there is.

It is the path that I have used for years and which makes change easier than I would have ever thought possible (in all areas of life).

With all that being said, I hope that this is as helpful for you as it has been for me.

3 Simple Lifestyle Tips for your New Year Resolutions

1. STOP Dieting & START Building Better Dietary Habits:

One of the biggest mistakes we make when trying to lose weight and improve our health is dieting.

By dieting I mean, changing our diet as a whole or in some (usually) drastic way, e.g, cutting out carbs (or fats) completely, fasting, cutting calories drastically, etc.

Time and experience (and plenty of studies) shows us all that diets have a horrible track record for producing long-term results.

Why? Lack of adherence and/or the inability to follow the diet for long periods.

If the strategy does not last neither will the result that it produced.

So, what should you do then?

Focus on gradually improving your dietary habits, allowing these small changes to compound overtime and create an overall healthy diet WITHOUT dieting.

Simple, right?

We don’t need to overcomplicate the process by following some unsustainable, unnecessary diet protocol.

The issue with our diet is a combination of different behaviors, e.g, overeating, eating too many junk foods, drinking calories through sugary beverages, not eating enough fruits and vegetables, etc.

So, if we can change these behaviors, making gradual improvements overtime, what do we get?

A healthier diet which will produce a leaner, healthier body WITHOUT dieting.

Now, this path takes patience but it is the one path which can change the whole concept of losing weight and eating for a healthier you.

One of the best things you can do for your long-term success in health and fitness is to…

STOP Dieting (and/or making drastic changes) & START Building Simple, Dietary Habits.

Simplicity is key!

Because the simpler it is the more likely you are to consistently do it, with this consistency (or repetition) leading to the formation of habits overtime.

Some simple dietary habit examples:

  • Eat a serving of a favorite fruit/vegetable before every meal.
  • Drink a 16oz glass/bottle of water 10-15 minutes before every meal (such as while preparing your meals).
  • Eat more slowly/mindfully, chewing as many times as possible and really paying attention to the textures and flavors of the food.
  • Using smaller plates/bowls.
  • Finding 2-3 substitutes for 2-3 problem foods, e.g, a lower calorie chip/snack, light ice cream in place of regular, thin crust pizza in place of regular crust, etc.
  • Getting smaller portions at a time (e.g, break your usual large serving into 3 smaller ones which you get one at a time).

It is the building and compounding of simple dietary habits like these which negate the need for dieting and make improving your diet as simple and practical as possible.

2. STOP Following Random Exercise Programs & START Developing a Simple, Enjoyable, & Convenient Exercise Regimen (that you actually look forward to doing):

One of the biggest mistakes individuals make when wanting to exercise more is following some random regimen, usually one that some influencer or guru says is “best for fat loss”.

The truth is that what is “best” for YOU is what you enjoy and therefore will be consistent in doing.

It is irrelevant how many calories a workout burns or how well it worked for 500 other people if YOU will not enjoy the workout.

Because if YOU don’t enjoy it YOU won’t keep doing it.

And if you don’t keep doing it you’ll never achieve long-term results.

So, what should you do?

Well, here are some steps to follow:

  • Find a form of exercise that is simple and that you think will be a good fit for you. If you think calisthenics (body weight) training seems simple and like something you’d like, try it. If you feel it is not for you and resistance bands, weights, or another form of resistance training is better suited, do that. Consistency matters most (other than safety) and consistency starts with what YOU enjoy and what is convenient for YOU to do.
  • Start slow with just 5-10 minutes, 2-3 times a week (if using a specific regimen, ignore whatever frequency they have because if that particular frequency and duration doesn’t work for you the workout becomes useless in the long-term). Remember, 5 minutes done consistently is much better than 60 minutes and quitting after a week or 2 due to burn out.
  • Gradually increase frequency, duration, and/or intensity overtime, e.g, slight increases every 2 weeks or so. You will see overtime how 5-10 minutes twice a week turns to 15-20 minutes, 3-4 times a week in a few months with this simple, practical (and therefore unsustainable) approach.
  • Be patient. To achieve sustainability we need to make gradual changes NOT large leaps. The downside to this path is that results usually (not always) come a bit more slowly. For this reason it requires patience and a focus on the long-term.
  • Correct when necessary. If at anytime what you are doing is failing, tweak when necessary to make it a better fit. Often times we just throw out the whole plan just because it didn’t work the first time. It isn’t always that the plan isn’t sufficient for you but that it needs some minor tweaks to be be a better fit. So, correct DON’T quit.

So, as you are working to adopt an exercise regimen this new year, consider the above section to improve your chances of finally finding consistency and therefore finally achieving lasting results.

3. STOP Aiming for Arbitrary Step Goals & START Building Simple, Physically Active Habits:

Whenever most want to move more they make a goal to start getting 10k steps a day (an arbitrary number as far as you’re concerned).

Most of those individuals barely get 5k steps when setting that goal, meaning they are aiming to double their step count overnight.

As always, we go for a large, drastic leap instead of a simple, gradual improvement.

And just can’t understand why we keep failing.

A better, more effective approach is to find several simple, practical things you can do to get moving more in a way which can more easily become habitual.

Such as;

  • Get up and move every 20-30 minutes: Set a timer on your watch or smart phone for 20-30 minutes (even an hour if your activity levels are currently very low) and every time it goes off get up and move for just 15-20 seconds. Arm circles, walking back and forth, toe touch to press, jumping jacks, whatever is simple, safe, and easy for you to do.
  • Set a specific, convenient time to walk for 5 minutes everyday: Find a time of day where you have free time and which you already have a set routine, e.g, walk for 5 minutes everyday after lunch. Pairing a new habit to a current habit can be very effective.

You can imagine that by doing these simple, practical strategies you will get more movement everyday (and therefore burn more calories everyday) without overwhelming yourself or doing too much too soon.

These are two great habits to build to make burning more calories everyday as simple, practical, and easy as it can (and should) be.

So, before you go setting some arbitrary step goal for this new year focus your time on adopting the above strategies to burn more calories everyday with ease.

Summary

If you want to lose weight, improve your health, and get fit this New Year you need to continually improve on these 3 key areas.

No restrictive, unsustainable dieting. No excessive exercise regimens. No arbitrary step goals.

No pills, quick fixes, nor gimmicks.

Just small, gradual improvements that produce a simple, easy to follow path (and therefore a greater likelihood of long-term results).

  • Develop good dietary habits by making small, gradual improvements.
  • Develop a consistent, enjoyable exercise regimen, starting slow and gradually increasing frequency, duration, and/or intensity overtime.
  • Develop active habits that keep you physically active.

I hope this helps make your new years resolutions as easy and sustainable as possible, helping you achieve lasting results.

For some great free resources to help you on this simple path to long-term weight loss and lasting change check out this page here (all resources are 100% free, requiring no email, no sign-ups, nor anything from you).

If you have any questions or need help implementing this method feel free to reach out here anytime, I’d be glad to help.

Best of luck everyone!

Michael Cruz

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

E-mail cofcoaching@yahoo.com Hours Monday-Friday: 9am-6pm
%d bloggers like this:
search previous next tag category expand menu location phone mail time cart zoom edit close