New Year’s Day may be a few weeks away. But if you want to commit to more activity or better eating, why wait? The holiday "Season of Eating" is near, why not make your resolution before the feasting—instead of after? Getting into a healthy routine now can carry you through to next Autumn.
In the early days of establishing good habits, it can be easy to run into obstacles. You might feel like taking a break one day, and before you know it you’re back where you started. On those "not so successful" days, here are some things you can try...
Think about something else.
Instead of dreading your date with exercise, focus on how great you’ll feel afterward—physically and emotionally. Picture yourself out in the fresh air and think about sights you want to see. Want to go window shopping? Visit the nearby park? Walk a new trail or just travel a few blocks over to visit a friend?
Make it social.
Tired of salads? They always taste better with friends (and when someone else is preparing them). Ask a friend to join you for a night out. Do the same with exercise—enlist a buddy to go for walks and the steps will fly by.
Treat a bad day right.
If you eat when you’re stressed, head off the impulse by phoning a friend and talking about what’s troubling you. Take a relaxing bath. Drag yourself out to exercise (there it is again, but it’s the best pressure-releaser we’ve got). If you can’t avoid eating, release that clenched jaw by munching crisp veggies.
Talk to your doctor.
As your body changes, your need for food, insulin and other medications may change, too. Continue checking your blood sugar regularly and work with your healthcare professional to update your plan.
Don’t lose faith.
You’ve heard the phrase, "first on, last off." If there’s a trouble spot you’re hoping to reduce—the place you most easily put on weight—it may be the last one to see results. If you focus on the way other parts of your body are slimming down, you’ll be happier. Eventually, your efforts will start to show everywhere.