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Tips from a dietitian for keeping New Year's resolutions

Posted by Janice Cox, RDN, LD, Lunds and Byerly’s Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist
Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Have you ever made New Year’s Resolutions that didn’t last very long? If so, you aren’t alone. In fact, one survey reports 70% of people keep their resolutions into February and only 20% maintain their resolutions into June or longer.

We know what doesn’t work. If a diet plan offers results and promises that sound too good to be true, IT IS too good to be true. There are no diet miracles. There is no replacement for a healthy diet and exercise program, and there is no replacement for how good a healthy diet and exercise program makes you feel.

Once you’ve identified your big resolutions for the New Year, break them down into smaller goals, which are a step by step plan.

A specific goal needs to answer who, what, when, where, which and why. Not specific goal: “I’m going to exercise.” Specific goal: “I’m going to walk on my lunch break.”

The goal also needs to be measurable by asking how much, how many, how it’s attainable. A specific and measurable goal: “I’m going to walk on my lunch break 3 days a week for 30 minutes each time.”

Finally, it needs to be realistic – here’s where you need to be honest with yourself and examine if you are willing and able to work toward the goal and to what degree. For example, if you currently aren’t exercising, a goal to go to the gym daily is not realistic. But going 3 times a week might be very attainable. Being honest, thoughtful and planning your goals will be a big step toward your success.

Please join me in January for a four week Healthy Weight and Lifestyle series of classes. My goal is to provide you with the tools you need to be successful in your efforts for a lifetime. The class is offered at the Byerly’s Ridgedale location. Class description, times, price and registration can be found here.

Let’s make 2012 THE YEAR that matters.

To your health!

Tags: diet

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