The new year is fast approaching! What goals are you setting?
Beware of asking too much of yourself right away. This can be unsustainable, and in some cases, extremely unhealthy. Check out a few examples of unrealistic goals below, and make sure that these aren’t on YOUR list...
- Weight loss of 10 pounds or more per month.
- Exercising every day.
- No restaurant dining.
- No snacking.
- No desserts.
- A strict, “go-hungry” diet.
- Skipping breakfast or lunch every day.
- Buying specialty foods that promise weight loss.
Realistic goals can be challenging, but should be achievable. Look for ways to improve your lifestyle, diet, and activities, but remember to start slowly. Take a look at a few examples of realistic goals below...
- Try a weight loss of 1-2 pounds per month.
- Aim to exercise an average of 5-6 days per week.
- Learn to make better choices at restaurants.
- Try new, healthful foods.
- Find satisfying snacks that are low in calories.
- Share an occasional dessert with other people but keep it from becoming an everyday occurrence.
- Follow MyPlate’s advice and enjoy your food, but eat less of it. Practice portion control.
- Eat healthful, lean breakfasts and lunches that are high in fiber.
- Enjoy plenty of fruits and veggies, cooked whole grains, and lean protein foods.
Still not sure where to start? Try one of these sample goals...
- Aim for a weight loss of 1-2 pounds per month.
- Make a conscious effort to buy and eat more fruits and vegetables.
- Plan your grocery shopping ahead of time to avoid random purchases.
- Manage the food you keep on hand and go out for occasional treats rather than keeping them around the house.
- Make better and smaller choices when you eat at restaurants. Try soup and salad as your entree, or an appetizer and a salad.
- When possible, bring a bag lunch from home. Packing your own lunch makes it easier to control the calories and contents.
- Keep high-calorie snack foods out of the house. They are less tempting that way!
Stephanie Ronco has been editing for Food and Health Communications since 2011. She graduated from Colorado College magna cum laude with distinction in Comparative Literature. She was elected a member of Phi Beta Kappa in 2008.