On Sunday, May 1 Categories:

I hate the word so much, it's hard to say sometimes but I'll put it here: resolution. You know, the one that never seems to get used except at the beginning of each year.

You wake up that first day after the new year (possibly still hungover after having so many shots, they decided to put your pic on a newly created "in your honor" Wall of Fame) and decide "Ok, this is it. This is the year I FINALLY stick to my New Years resolution!" You just spent the past 2 months celebrating holidays that involve eating massive amounts of calories and decreasing the turkey population by half. You gained weight, feel crappy and you have been hyping yourself up that once the new year gets here, you are going to get on it. You arrive at the gym and you see a picture like the one to the left. Apparently, everyone else also believes that the new year brings about this "magical" spell that will force you (all of a sudden) to stick to a plan. As a trainer, this is honestly a good time of year. It's typically busy and everyone has the "bug" to exercise.

It's also a horrible time of year going into any gym in the world because IT'S TYPICALLY BUSY AND EVERYONE HAS THE "BUG" TO EXERCISE.

The normal 75-100 people that are usually at your larger gym shoots up to 400. You bump into people at every machine and elbow your way to your locker afterwards and just pray you make it to your car without committing assault and battery on someone for invading your space. It never fails that after the month of January, the gyms will be back to normal. The resolution is no more and you fall back into the same habits. This is one of the reason I HATE the word "resolution." It's time to come up with a new word. Something I always tell my clients and anyone else who cares to listen is it should be all about making LIFESTYLE changes, not once a year "resolutions." You should aim to make a "Lifeolution" and it can be any day of the year, not just Jan 1st.

Don't get me wrong...I LOVE to hear people really try to make changes for the better and I do it too. It means you at least WANT to make a change. Just don't get so wrapped up in following what everyone else does. When you truly put your mind to making actual changes to your lifestyle, it no longer is a "diet"...it simply becomes the way you eat. It's no longer a "resolution" but just how you LIVE YOUR LIFE. You notice that you NEVER have to make a resolution to eat unhealthy food and exercise as little as possible. It just happens and the only reason it "just happens" for most is simple: It has become a way of life. Everyone has the ability to break this pattern and start putting in place simple steps to make sure that if you do decide that this is the year you are going to turn your health and body around for good, you are able to incorporate it into your daily life and not feel like it's a chore.

Here are some things I have learned over the years and that I have told others that may help you STICK to becoming a NEW YOU:

1) Never bring all the pots/pans of food to the dinner table - Most families, when sitting down to eat together, bring the pots and pans or serving dishes to the table and sit down and eat. This easily can lead to reaching and eating more since the food is RIGHT there in front of you, yelling at you to eat more. Changing this one little thing can save tons of calories each meal. Have everyone make their plate at the stove and then sit down and eat.

2) While on the topic of eating, SLOW DOWN when eating! - Ever been around someone who seems to be the only person at the table who heard the "bell" and decided to eat as if they are on Coney Island in front of thousands of people cheering them on??? Yep, you have probably seen them or are probably ONE of them. Slow down. Unless you are eating something that is still alive and you HAVE to eat fast before it gets away (if you are doing this, I would LOVE to see video of this), slow down and take your time. There are many methods to practice this but the best ones I have heard over the years are a) Take at least 15-20 chews per mouthful and b) Put your fork down in between each bite. It typically takes around 20 minutes before the signal reaches your brain to tell you "your full" and if you stuff an entire plate down before that signal and then some, it's easy to see how one can overeat. Once you get full, there is a sure fire way to make sure you don't overeat: Put the (insert whatever colorful adjective you like here) fork down and get up from the table! Trust me, you will get to eat again so don't act like this is your last meal, unless you are on death row and having your last meal...in that case, eat HOWEVER the (again, insert whatever colorful adjective you like here) you want and I'll see you on the other side.

3) Don't let anything get in the way of your workout - Yep, this is definitely "easier said than done" but if you really plan on finally making your New Year "You Know What" stick, you have to get in the habit of doing this. You would never let anything interrupt your sleep (except a new baby)...you rarely let anything keep you from work, from meeting friends for drinks, etc. Same applies to your workouts. Make it a part of your LIFE. Besides any life threatening emergencies ("You said she fell down the stairs and is in the ER??? OK, I'll be there soon as I leave my spinning class...") never let something get in the way of you sticking to your scheduled workout.

4) Buddy up or get a trainer - Of course I had to say something to convince people even more why they need to hire me (if you are in Seattle, LOOK ME UP and if you aren't, tickets aren't too expensive to fly here...I'll give you a good discount!) but all kidding aside, a GOOD trainer will help keep you motivated and work with you no matter what you may be dealing with. A good trainer will truly care and do whatever they can to help. A friend can also help with this, especially one who has the same goals as you. Keep each other accountable and push each other to stick with it!

5) Believe in yourself - I have trained with many who were their biggest critic. They would psych themselves out of doing a certain exercise, tell themselves they can't stick to eating healthy and so on. BELIEVE you can make this the year you truly change your lifestyle. Negative people around you who keep bringing you down and pushing bad habits on you??? Get rid of 'em (and just to clarify for any possible subpoenas asking me to appear in court, NO, I don't mean kill the person or make them disappear in a way that can have you fighting something that starts with the words "capital" or "felony") but really limit time around those type of people. Surround yourself with others who have a lifestyle you are trying to attain...those who truly make their health a priority and not a chore.

Do you have any tips or ideas that have worked/are working for you in sticking to your new "Lifeolution?" Comment and let me/everyone know!

Effortlessly program your mind for success! Click Here Now to find out more.

James D. Clark
Personal Fitness Trainer/Specialist
Seattle, WA

Web: http://www.jbodyfit.com/blog
Toll Free: (866) 606-5923

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