Contributed by Diane Harrison of www.healthpsa.info
The end of this year is nigh, and you’re no doubt noodling resolutions before the new year begins. Inevitably, healthier habits are part of your game plan for next year, whether it be getting more exercise in the form of running or getting healthier with your food intake. Let’s take a look at some ways you can kickstart your year by getting right, both mentally and physically:
Physical fitness: Forming habits is rewarding
The key to turning your New Year’s resolutions from fads to habits is practice. Your intentions are in the right place, but it can be difficult to make them stick — and that’s not for lack of willpower, either. It takes around 66 days to form a habit. Setting clear-cut goals, taking each day one at a time, and setting realistic expectations for yourself are all integral parts of placing that New Year’s goal in the realm of “habit.”
You can even have friends and family help keep you accountable, and that makes it easier to make these kinds of big lifestyle changes. Having someone by your side to help you maintain focus can be incredibly rewarding. You also want to make sure you’re creating healthy eating habits as well, which can take the form of shopping at your local health food store. Above everything else, keep your resolutions simple and specific.
One thing you can do to help increase your chances of meeting your physical fitness goals is to invest in new workout gear. Knowing what kind of gear you need is critical — a smartphone, fitness tracker, and heart monitor are all recommended, along with the usual sweat-slicking outfits for activities like running.
Getting into the habit of running can be daunting, but creating clear-cut goals like having a race to look forward to and tracking your progress with apps can help you solidify that habit. Just make sure you listen to your body and do what you can to improve form while not compromising on health.
Mental wellness: Look no further than your own front door
The other side of the coin in terms of what you should be focusing on in the new year is your mental stability. Your home is your sanctuary. When you’re feeling downtrodden or uncomfortable in the space that should be your own, it’s time to revitalize your area.
There are several ways to turn your home into a fresh and vibrant space to help relieve tension, including decluttering the space, doing some deep cleaning of all the nooks and crannies, and letting in fresh air by pushing aside heavy curtains and opening windows. This especially helps when your family is spewing negative energy into the atmosphere by complaining, fighting, or being overly critical.
Negative energy exists in a lot of forms, and that can wreak havoc on your New Year’s resolutions, not to mention your everyday life. Taking a moment to declutter your space can help you refocus. One platitude that may help you with this task: cleanliness is a form of self-respect. When you respect yourself, you can improve your relationships with others and with your space, paving the way for all the bad energy to eschew your abode.
The mental benefits of a clean home don’t end with expelling bad energy -- decluttering and deep-cleaning your home can also help you increase productivity, raise your social confidence, and boost creativity levels. These are all integral characteristics for having a successful start to the new year.
It’s all in the support
Having the right support system to take your New Year’s resolutions from dreams to habits is key. Physical fitness and mental health rely on you and your relationships — both with yourself and with others. And if you want to kick your new year into high gear with a new fitness routine, get coached by Coach Ken!
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Ken Presutti is a certified ChiRunning instructor, ACE Personal trainer, Spinning instructor, and coach. This blog is a mix of new articles and posts from his original blog, Overkill is Underrated.