Cold weather, darker evenings, and the prospect of Christmas and its many excesses do little to inspire most people to begin new and build on existing habits. Most procrastinate until the New Year – although the majority of resolutions made on New Year’s Eve are thrown out with the empties within a week.
So, if you want to be in your best shape in 2017, now is the time to start.
1. Match Wine For Water
The party season puts many temptations our way and whatever your poison you’re poised to quaff way more of it between now and midnight on the 31st of January than any other time of year.
Now we don’t want to poop your party but a simply habit you cultivate now will keep the calories low and the Hangovers less severe.
Every time you take an alcoholic drink, simply consume the same quantity of water. It will keep you hydrated, and also make you feel full and less likely to succumb to the munchies. Plus it will help your body process the toxins in the booze making for a more memorable night and a less messy morning.
2. Aim For 10k Every Day
Whether you’re a Fitness Fanatic or have to push yourself to exercise, having a step goal is becoming an increasingly popular way of keeping movement levels up and it’s a low-brain, low intensity way to burn calories.
The popularity of smart watches enable people to monitor their step count and link with friends in good-hearted competitions to see who walks the furthest.
And if you don’t have any wearable tech you can easily download a free pedometer app to your phone.
Even if you’re office-bound you can take a short walk every hour or so to keep the paces building.
Each day you’ll need roughly 400 calories to take those steps, that’s 2,800 each week to offset the mulled wine and mince pies.
4. Record what you eat
There are many apps available now that enable you to record your food intake. Most recognise packaged foods by their names and barcodes, plus if you’re a home cooker you can add recipes of your own.
For the first week don’t think of it as a Diet, consider it a new habit. Simply discipline yourself to record what you eat and after a week start to analyse macro ingredients – carbs, protein and fat and the micro ingredients.
Once you’ve done this set small achievable goals to aim to balance any imbalances in your diet over the course of each week for the next few weeks. We know there will be parties and long lunches in the mix so forgive yourself the indulgences and see how close you come to achieving the balance on a weekly basis.
Finally from the fifth week onwards try to plan your diet using the apps more, factoring in the social occasions when you’ll succumb to temptation and taking back control of your food and drink intake on the days there aren’t celebrations.
By January, when the parties are over, use the app to stick to the healthiest eating plan you can every day.
5. Share your journey
Numerous research projects have concluded that sharing your intentions with others and buddying up with friends when you commit to a new healthy way of living commits all involved to the task.
So, tell your most supportive friends of your plans, set up a 10K Step challenge at work, and if you’re actually setting a weight loss target take selfies on the same day at the same time each week to monitor how you go.
Be honest with everyone involved (including yourself). Share the pitfalls and the triumphs. Support others too, this will inspire you to try harder. Blog and Tweet your thoughts and feelings. Source people on social media who inspire you and follow them too. It will all help to keep you on track though the festive season and way beyond.