Your resolution can’t be too broad. If it doesn’t outline the steps that are required to reach the goal, you may feel lost and more likely to abandon ship. Setting specific parameters will help you stay focused.
Most people have no clue where to start when making food choices. You start by starting simple. Here’s how:
- Choose your favourite nutrient-packed, wholesome ingredients and try out new recipes that incorporate them. Some fantastic powerhouse ingredients are spinach, beets and beef.
- People often assume eating healthy means only eating fruits and vegetables. Don’t forget that protein is a key component of a healthy plate.
- If you’re a meat eater, don’t avoid beef. Compared to other protein sources, gram for gram, beef is one of the richest sources of complete protein, containing all essential amino acids, and is full of essential nutrients such as iron, zinc, selenium, and vitamin B12. What’s more, beef is unprocessed powerhouse of nutrients without all the fat, sugar and additives.
It’s important to include measurable goals throughout your journey. For instance, if you know you need to get in shape and stay there, you need a routine you’ll be able to stick with. A solid plan will help establish concrete benchmarks to assess your progress overtime in achieving your final goal. Measurable goals help to make the process tangible.
One of the most common pitfalls when making New Year’s resolutions is that we tend to set goals we know we can’t accomplish. In the beginning we feel motivated and challenge ourselves to unrealistic or lofty goals. However, if the goal is too out of reach, you may feel discouraged and decide to abandon your commitment altogether.
It’s also easy to fall into the trap of the latest fad diet. These include meal plans that eliminate or restrict entire food groups like meat or carbs and promise quick results. Instead, focus on eating real foods from a variety of food groups. Think of the healthy plate method. Each time you sit down to eat, fill half your plate with fruits and/or veggies, a quarter of your plate with a whole grain like quinoa or brown rice and a final quarter of your plate with a nutrient-dense protein like beef. The healthy meal combinations are endless.
Being realistic doesn’t just mean setting attainable goals. It’s about carefully considering each element of your goal – from the plan of action to the result – and ensuring they line up with your reality. If you have tendencies to procrastinate or know you have a sweet tooth, don’t beat yourself up. Instead, accept that part of yourself and put in checks and balances to help you stay on track.
It’s also important to be realistic about your lifestyle. If you have a busy schedule, it is easy to rely on eating out. While restaurants are fine on occasion, cooking at home will ensure you are getting wholesome, nutritious ingredients in your diet. And here’s a tip: Always make enough so you’ll have leftovers. Cooking once and eating twice — or more —will help save time and money.
“I’ll do it tomorrow”. Does this sound familiar? When there’s no deadline in site, it’s easy to put things off. Having a realistic time frame will help you focus your efforts and break your final goal into bite-sized targets to stay motivated throughout. As you accomplish the smaller targets you’ve set for yourself along the way, your changes will start to feel like natural habits and eventually you’ll be able to maintain your goals long-term.
Dai Manuel, also known as Coach Moose, is a digital thought leader and lifestyle mentor empowering people to lead a ‘FUN’ctionally fit life through education, encouragement and community. Dai is also a keynote speaker, award-winning blogger, Podcaster, CrossFit athlete and coach, and published author of the Whole Life Fitness Manifesto.