Set realistic health goals for 2020

Functional medicine

How are those 2020 health resolutions holding up? If you’ve already fallen off the bandwagon, don’t worry, you’re in good company. The majority of people struggle to follow through with their resolutions beyond January (in fact most give up by mid-January). But why do we struggle to keep our promises to ourselves? And is there a better way?

Make it achievable 

Exactly when you decide to set a goal doesn’t matter, it’s how you set it that makes all the difference. Most resolutions fail because they’re overly ambitious and oftentimes too vague.

Instead of having one big, undefined goal, rather focus on small goals and having a clear plan to achieve them. That way, you’ll be able to track your progress and celebrate small wins – which will keep you motivated to keep going and build on your positive momentum. Research shows when it comes to weight loss and healthy eating, something as simple as keeping a food diary can dramatically improve results.

Be accountable 

Beyond simply keeping track of progress (be it through your own diary or an app) there are other ways to keep yourself accountable for your goals. If you want to be more active, having a gym or running buddy with the same goals can go a long way. Another important consideration is working with the right experts for guidance and support.

For example, at le Roux Chiropractic, we help patients set realistic health and fitness goals and create custom wellness programmes to ensure these goals are met. Knowing you have a check-in with your chiropractor at set intervals can help keep you accountable and on track.

Focus on why 

If you’re finding it difficult to keep your resolve, you may need to interrogate why you set the goal in the first place. Simply saying you want to lose weight to fit in a pair of jeans is not a very strong ‘why’ when your resolve is wavering in front of the ice cream section at the store after a hard day at work.

However, if your goal to lose weight is rooted in an understanding that it will help you lead a healthier, longer life, which will enable you to do more of the things you love with the people you love, suddenly that ice cream doesn’t seem quite as important.

Don’t be afraid to ditch them

When it comes to goal setting and achieving, don’t force it. It’s okay to change focus and let a goal go if it’s no longer something you’re aspiring to or something that makes sense at the specific life stage you’re in. Don’t let it hang over your head. Priorities and circumstances change – move on to a more achievable goal with a clear why.

Goal inspiration

Here are some ideas for realistic health goals to work towards in 2020:

  • Improve your sleep hygiene

Sleep is so critical to how we function in our everyday lives. Sleeping better can have many knock-on positive health effects. Try to establish better sleep patterns by creating a set bed time routine. Start by switching off all electronics at least an hour before bed, and try taking a bath or reading a book instead. Build up towards ensuring you go to bed and wake up at the same time, seven days a week.

  • Move more

No one can go straight from the couch to completing a marathon. That’s a recipe for disappointment. Instead of setting a big, scary goal, start smaller with committing to doing more steps a day, an hour of exercise three days a week, or just half an hour a day. Once you’ve done that for a few months, you’ll be in a better position to build up to a bigger goal.

  • Practice stress management

Find a way to destress that works for you. Whether it’s reading before bed, following a 10-minute guided meditation every day, taking a yoga or Pilates class once a week, taking up painting or another hobby. Don’t force yourself to do something just because you made a resolution – take the time to find what works for you, and then schedule that activity regularly.

  • Have a good breakfast

Instead of setting a broad, undefined goal like ‘eating better’, go specific. Work with a professional to truly understand what the right nutrition plan is for you. Then start small with something as simple as making a nutrient-rich smoothie for breakfast every morning, for example. This is an easy way to set yourself on the right path for the rest of the day. Make sure you plan ahead and keep all the ingredients you need on hand so you can stick to it no matter what the morning throws at you.

Need help setting your health goals and making them happen this year? At le Roux Chiropractic we’re passionate about holistic patient care and giving you the support you need to lead a healthier life. Make an appointment with us online to get started. 

References 

Resolutions last exactly this long. The New York Post. 2018.
https://nypost.com/2018/12/21/new-years-resolutions-last-exactly-this-long/

Keeping a food diary doubles weight loss. Science Daily. 2008.
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/07/080708080738.htm

Dr. Matt le Roux is a man of many talents: chiropractor, sports scientist and functional medicine practitioner. His science-based approach motivates him to explore the synergy between health and performance that changes the way you move, live, train, think, and eat.

Dr Matt le Roux

Chiropractor, Functional medicine practitioner

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