New years resolutions bring a swarm of traffic to the gyms as people set intentions to lose weight and get healthier. You could argue that the summer bathing suit season is just as busy a time at the gym, but regardless of when you’ve made your resolutions to get fit and lose weight, it’s what you focus on that makes all the difference.
It was two new years resolutions that got me started on my journey of a 300 pound weight loss. The resolutions were to give up salt and to begin exercising. As part of my original weight loss story written years ago (and never quite completed), I posted a scanned image of my resolutions which were quite simple.
- Lose weight by exercising
- Give up salt
Focus On What You Want
Being absolutely clear with yourself and your brain is a critical part in getting that which you want. It’s fairly easy to set the resolution “to lose weight”, but being clear about how you’re going to lose weight is much more powerful. It’s the action steps that are going to take you there, so focus on them and you’ll get what you want.
The words we choose are powerful, so be clear about what you intend on doing.
“Exercise more” is general where “Walk 30 minutes a day, five days a week” is more action oriented
“Drink more water” is a good idea, where “I resolve to measure out four litres of water each morning and consume the entire amount over the course of the day before going to bed” is a lot more specific.
New Years Resolutions That Make Sense
I’m sure you’ve wanted to make changes to your lifestyle each year and have full intention of keeping them. With that in mind, would you be open to some new ways of thinking? Would you like some ideas for resolutions that make sense? Resolutions that you can take action on and get the results you’re looking for?
The list of new years resolutions that follow offer some ways of thinking that come from a place of focusing on your health rather than weight loss. Weight loss should be thought of as a side effect of becoming more healthy. Focus on making changes to how you eat, how you can improve the functioning of your body and you’ll get the results you’re looking for along with a lifetime of benefits.
Pick from a few of these and write them out on a piece of paper. In fact, for the first 30 days of the new year, write them down repeatedly saying them aloud as you do so. Say them with passion as if your life depended on it. Speak passionately, not loudly. Speak to yourself as if they were the most important and loving commitments you’ve ever made to yourself. This is you talking to yourself each and every day about the most important steps you’ll ever take towards your new self and the new direction you’re taking in your life.
- Resolve to walk for at least 30 minutes every day – and while you’re out moving, focus on taking in deep full breaths. Consider walking to be about oxygenating your blood rather than moving your legs. More often than not, walkers tend to consider the amount of calories burned during the exercise, but I’d rather you focus on the metabolism boosting function of having more oxygen in your body. Fat gets burned in the presence of oxygen, but it also improves your mood and allows your cells to do what they do best, produce energy. Walking is also one of the best ways to move your lymph system, which helps in the elimination of waste material. In essence, walking helps you clean your body from the inside out.
- Resolve to begin exercising your body using body weight exercises such as push ups or body weight squats – challenge yourself to do some of the most basic movements such simply getting into the squat position and lifting your body weight up and down a few times per day. Challenge yourself to do more per day, more per week, or more in a given amount of time. How many squats can you do in 2 minutes? Keep doing squats on a daily basis and repeat the challenge every week to see if you’re getting stronger. Working the leg muscles and making them stronger / more muscular is one of the easiest ways to get leaner and stronger all over your body. Join our body weight challenges for more inspiration.
- Resolve to measure out 4 litres of water (1 gallon) each morning and to consume it at regular intervals throughout the day so that all of it is consumed before bed – Water is your life and it’s not just enough to say “I will drink more water in the new year”. Water plays a role in almost all the functions of our body including digestion, elimination and energy production. It’s generally agreed upon that the correct amount of water to consume, on a daily basis, is half our body weight in ounces. If you weight 200 pounds, you should be drinking at least 100 ounces of water – per day, every day. If you exercise, you should drink more and if you live in a hot climate, even more again. Read this article on 50 ways to drink more water
- Resolve to eat less salt and more potassium – a very little thought about concept is the correlation of sodium to potassium that you have in your body. Our ancestors ate 10:1 potassium to sodium where the average North American today eats 1:4. We eat too little potassium and eat way too much sodium. Eating more potassium and lowering your sodium intake improves your bodies ability to hydrate itself, release retained water, lower blood pressure and cholesterol and generally improve the ability for your body to move nutrition into your cells while removing wastes. Read more about potassium containing foods and the role of potassium in your body. Just eliminating any salt you add to your foods is the best place to start. Then eat more vegetables and dark leafy green vegetables as well and your body will do the rest.
- Resolve to focus on what you want, not what you don’t want – The words you use have power, so focus on the things you want vs the the things you dont want. If you want to quit drinking pop, then focus on drinking more water. If you want to lose weight, focus on getting in daily exercise. If you want to watch less television, then focus on reading more books or going out for a walk in place of the TV.
- Resolve to replace the words “I can’t do that” with “How can I?” – One phrase turns the brain off, while the other turns the brain on. One statement ends the conversation while the other begins searching for solutions to that which you ask. There’s power in simply asking a question
Some people swear by new years resolutions and others hate them. Some experts find them useless because they’re set without any proper though given to the methods to achieve them and my friend James Jordan says “A day is a day and a moment a moment NewYears resolutions are for wankers who cant keep promises to themselves”. I think new years resolutions are a tool to new beginnings – and if you’re serious about them, you’ll write them down and look at them every day, regardless of the time of year. Any day can be your own personal first day of the year, it’s action and follow through that make all the difference.