Holiday season can be like a warm blissful dream with great friends and family around, parties galore, celebratory toasts, holiday dinners, and overindulging on homemade bake goods. Waking up from the holiday season can definitely be an eye opening experience. With the morning breathe of one too many holiday nightcaps and maybe that second plate of glazed ham and mashed potatoes, it’s probably time to dust off those gym shoes in the corner.
Want to lose those 15lbs you put on over the holiday or during the past year? They say the fastest way to lose weight is to cut off an appendage. Since I think everyone is very happy with their working limbs, we’ll eliminate that solution. Follow my plan and you will lose your ultimate weight loss goal. It’s simple: change one habit.
Tell me if you’ve heard this one before “Old habits die hard”. Let’s focus on ONE habitual change first and go from there. For example, instead of saying I’m going to get 6-11 servings of vegetables in my diet a day, if you don’t eat any vegetables, maybe say I will eat one serving of vegetables every day. Find a vegetable that you like (steamed Brussel sprouts are not on my list). If you want to start exercising, start with a small goal too. Set a small goal for yourself and keep going until you’re ready to challenge yourself further.
According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, four stages are needed to allow change to happen:
- Contemplative: You’ve thought about your health goal at one point or another
- Preparation: You’re now sure you’d like to accomplish your desired goal and are now in the process of planning how to get this done!
- Action: You’ve said talk is cheap! Let’s get moving!
Maintenance: You’ve now made this a lifestyle change throughout setback, slip-ups, and curve-balls.
Grab a piece of paper and a pencil. Now jot down two or three goals and pick ONE. Circle it and put it someplace you can see all the time. Remember focus on habitual change not end results (ie. I’m going to drink 8 cups of water a day vs. I want to fit into my size X pants).
Spoiler alert: you will have set back and slipup! You may fail big time (ie. You could sabotage yourself by eating that meat lover’s pizza). R-E-L-A-X, you’re human. Your body is saying something is too challenging and it needs to be adjusted. Dust yourself off and comeback stronger and smarter!
Good luck to everyone on their pursuit to a healthy change in 2015. Whether it’s eating more fruits and vegetables or losing weight, whatever positive change you make is worth the effort!
For more details about change go to: http://win.niddk.nih.gov/publications/PDFs/Changing_Your_Habits.pdf
About the Author
Jeff Ringelberg ATC, CSCS
Health and fitness have always been a part of Jeff’s life. He participated in sports including basketball, football, tennis, downhill skiing, water skiing, golf, la crosse, and soccer. He enjoys staying active and learning new exercises and programs. He worked with Division I athletes as well as interned for the New Orleans Saints football team. Since living in the Bay Area, Jeff has worked in his own personal training business for six years as well as earned his MA in Sport Management from San Jose State University.