food intake

Be SMART!

Make your goals stick this year with a specific plan. As busy women, often times, we begin the year with Resolutions by only stating our desired outcomes.  We know what we want as the end result such as complete a 5K, lose 10 lbs, or eat healthier. What we can sometimes fail to do is to have a plan of action on how to get there. Research suggests that 50% of persons starting an exercise program will drop out within the first 6 months.  It can happen because we have become overwhelmed with what we want to accomplish and make no changes in our current schedule or routine to making lasting results.  Instead, we as “more than conquerors,” decide to add more and more to our plate, without taking anything off.  Sound familiar? When writing your resolutions and goals for the year, ask yourself if they are: SMART SPECIFIC, MEASURABLE, ACTIONED BASED, REALISTIC and TIME BOUND.

You goal should be Specific in describing a plan to attain your desired results? Instead of saying, I am going to start exercising and eating healthier, get very specific about how that looks to you.

For example:

I will exercise for 30 minutes three days a week.

I will exercise 5 days a week for 20 minutes.

I will decrease my fast food intake from 4x to 2x each week.

I will eat 2 fruits a day.

Often times, we say, I am going to start taking better care of myself or I am going to have more time for myself and God.  The question is “how will you know you are taking better care of yourself”

Write your goals stating how you will Measure your success?

For example:

This year, I will be taking better care of myself, by attending one yoga class a week

I will have quiet time with God by getting up 30 minutes earlier than my normal routine 3days a week.

To get results, we need to know what Actions we will take go get us there. If you are determined this year to decrease your blood pressure or cholesterol or to lose a pant size, your goal needs to be action based.

For example,

To decrease my cholesterol, I will decrease my fried food from 3x per week to 1x per week

To lose one pant size I will decrease my calories by 500 a day.

Our actions and behaviors give us results. I believe knowing the action you will do to get the results is the most important component of a goal.

Side note: My personal goal this year is to avoid talking on the phone in my car by putting my purse and phone in the back seat.  (my action)

Are you being Realistic with yourself?  If you currently do not have time to exercise, having a goal to now exercise 5 days a week may be unrealistic, so change it to 3.  Set yourself up for success.  In order for you attain your goals, you need to have confidence that you can do them.  If you feel the goal itself can be obtained, such as five days of exercise, something else may need to change in your current lifestyle such as giving up another activity (TV, social time, a little sleep) to make it happen.

Try to make your goals be Time Bound.  In other words, it is easy to procrastinate if we have not given ourselves a personal deadline.

For example

I will run a 5K by June 1

I will walk three times a week by May 1.

When you put it into a plan that works for you, this year can be very different.  Remember:

“Next year, you will have wished you would have started today”

Balancing Our Weight

Developing Healthy Habits! In a recent report by our Surgeon General, Regina Benjamin, she shares her goals to decrease our nation’s rate of Obesity both in adults and children by developing healthy habits. Today, two out three American adults are overweight or obese, and another 5.9% are now considered extremely obsess.  Excess weight increases the risk for heart disease, stroke, diabetes, several cancers, gallbladder disease and more. Her focus is to encourage Americans to choose more nutritious food, increase daily physical active and manage stress, which can keep people form developing healthy habits. She states that the causes of obesity are consuming too many calories, not getting enough physical activity, genes, metabolism, behavior, environment and cultures.

This can seem like too many factors to even worry or attempt to control, but I encourage you to look at that list and see what factors you can control.  The truth is that balancing our weight can be difficult. Genetics and environmental factors make it more challenging for some than others, but there are things that each of us can do.  So many times I have people asking me, “will this work?”  They are looking for the answer to quick weight loss with little effort.  My response is always with a question.  “Can you do it for the rest of your life”.  Americans spend billions of dollars a year on diets and products promising weight loss, only to fail along the way. If you are implementing a weight loss plan that you can not do for the rest of your life, it simply won’t work.

So how do we balance our weight? Incorporate healthy behaviors that you can do for a life time by focusing on small changes one at a time.

In a recent study by the National Weight Control Registry, individuals who lost at least 30 lb and kept it off for more than 1 year had common behaviors. They monitor their weight and food intake, maintain a low-calorie and low-fat diet, eat breakfast almost every day (see blog on Time Matters), perform 1 hour of physical activity daily and limit television time to 10 hours per week (another initiative by the Surgeon General).  It seems like a lot of changes and things to do at one time, but with weight loss and weight management there is not a magic pill or special formula, we have to change one behavior at a time.

Weight Loss Tip:

Take just one week to write down everything you eat.    Most people totally underestimate what and how many calories they are eating.  Write down every bite even those small pieces of candy that may not seem that much. (ex: 4 peppermints = 100 calories).  You may learn something about yourself including events or situations that trigger you to eat when you are really not hungry.

To learn more about developing healthy habits that will last a life time with your own personal Wellness coach go to www.crystalclearchange.com and for more information or to receive a free consultation contact me at crystal@crystalclearchange.com or 409-550-7606.