07 Dec Four New Year’s Resolutions That Actually Work
People far too often set lofty expectations of themselves at the start of the year, only to be disappointed a few weeks later. Rather than giving you the usual goal setting secret to achieving your best year in health and fitness, we have put together a list of resolutions that real clients have used and will give you the results you desire in 2020.
1. Exercise 15 Minutes a Week
A new exercise regime is often a daunting prospect for people, particularly once life starts to get busy. The wheels fall off and you’re back to square one. But for those time poor, workoholics, socialoholics and gymphobics, there is a solution. Research shows that you can promote fat loss, increase strength, gain muscle or improve power with as little as 15 minutes of high intensity exercise a week! That’s right – week, not day. Of course if you want greater and faster results, this can be attempted several days a week with adequate recovery. The key to this minimal time and maximal result exercise is high intensities, broken into intervals, also known as high intensity interval training. You need to exert yourself so much in those 15 minutes, that you couldn’t possibly do 16 minutes. Reaching those levels of intensity overloads the body and forces it to adapt and improve.
2. Limit Sitting and Sleeping to 23.5 Hours
One of the main reasons people fail their latest exercise regime is that often they would prefer to stick needles in their eyes than face the thought of going to the gym. So instead they end up doing nothing. We need to start viewing exercise differently, see it as movement that is essential for our bodies to function. Just like a car needs fuel to drive, we need movement to live. There is a growing body of research that show strong correlations between negative health outcomes and the amount of time you spend sitting. The type of movement doesn’t matter, you just need to move! Find something you enjoy and you can mix it up everyday. Whether it is kicking a football with mates, swimming in a local pool, cycling first thing in the morning or even walking between meetings, the main idea is to limit the time you spend sitting and sleeping to 23.5 hours a day and dedicate a small part of your day to moving!
3. Cut Out Refined Sugar
By now most people are aware of the dangers of sugar to not only maintaining a healthy weight but overall performance. Aim to cut out refined sugar like chocolate, and focus on your consumption of unprocessed nutrient dense whole foods such as vegetables. By restricting the amount of sugar you eat on a weekly basis you will have more energy; lose substantial amounts of body fat; strengthen your immune system and increase overall vitality. If you really want to challenge yourself, try going 21 days without any refined sugar.
4. Nominate Alcohol Days
Drinking too much is one of the most common barriers we hear as health professionals. There is a reason why every man and his dog look to embark on Feb Fast, a month without a drop of alcohol… it’s usually because it has been Jan Joy, a month of continuous drinking and overindulgence. Rather than attempting to cut out alcohol for 28 days of the year, start with 3 alcohol free days a week for a whole year. That is a total of 156 days. If this is easily achievable for you, aim for 4 days or 5 days a week.
The important thing to remember with all these principles is not to aim for perfection, aim to be better! 1 > 0, doing something is better than doing nothing. As anything in life, achieving great health is never a defining moment but rather a continuous dynamic process.
Share your resolutions with us, or if you would like more clarity on any aspect of health and fitness email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.