I haven’t made resolutions in years. I’ve set goals, but I haven’t made resolutions.
What’s the difference? Aren’t they the same? According to some there is. Goals are milestones and not necessarily permanent.
For example, one might say “My goal is to run a marathon this year. My goal is to read a book a week this year.” Resolutions, however, tend to be longer term. They are milestones with a definitive plan. This makes sense to me.
For years I’ve been saying “I don’t make resolutions anymore. I don’t really stick to them and so I make goals instead.” Well isn’t that an excuse if I’ve ever heard one!
I was all set to do the same thing this year. I loosely promised to eat better. But I never set a plan. And, truth of the matter is I do eat well. I eat tons of fruits, veggies and lean protein. I don’t drink soda or juice and don’t do too terribly with my coffee or alcohol intake. My issue is my sweet tooth. Sugar and carbs are my downfall. Freshly baked cookies, ice cream, a crusty loaf of French bread, a warm, chewy slice of pizza… Those are my great downfalls. Forget about the “Carb Closet” (aka Pantry) filled to the brim with chips, pretzels and everything else forbidden and delicious - that’s an altogether different story.
I had my physical last week. I eat well. I work out a lot and hit the gym 5-6 times a week. I’ll often take back to back classes in the same morning. I spin for my calorie torching, high intensity cardio, and do either Barre or Pilates for core and all over muscle strengthening and conditioning. When I am on my bike I push myself til I am breathless. Until the sweat is dripping down my face, neck and back. If I am going to eat more I need to burn more.
After a recent physical I learned recently that this isn’t always the case. I ate more and I gained more and no amount of exercise was helping. I’m in great shape and despite the fact my jeans are tighter than I would like them to be, I’m neither overweight or obese. I think I look pretty good for someone who’s chasing 52. Despite my healthy eating the numbers on the scale were high. And for the first time in my life, my cholesterol had started to inch up. I nearly fell off my chair when I saw all the numbers
I texted my doctor and asked her if the weight gain might be the result of one of the medications I am taking. No, she told me. It’s the result of all the holiday food. (Note to self: never schedule a physical on December 28th!) She assured me that by cutting back all would be well and good again. She wasn’t at all concerned. But I was. I am. I know how much harder it is to stay in shape and keep the numbers on the scale down.
So now what? Well, for starters, no more excuses!
Obviously I don’t need to make sure I get more exercise since I get plenty. But I do need to make sure I stay away from those foods that aren’t good for me. I’m not talking about doing anything drastic or extreme. I don’t believe in fad diets - though if they work for you, then by all means continue. For me, it simply means cutting back on those foods that bother me. I know what they are, yet their hold on me is so controlling that even when I don’t feel well after I eat them, I continue to do so.
So I made a resolution for the first time in forever. As of a couple of days ago I completely cut out all complex carbohydrates - breads, cookies, crackers, chips, etc., and sugars save for my morning coffee. I have increased my veggie intake, fruits - especially berries, and continue on my apple a day kick. I’m not really a red meat lover but I had been eating more than I should. I will be cutting out red meat as well, eating chicken and increasing my fish and seafood intake. It’s really simple and not hard. In a few weeks I should be back to my old self. If, I do eat something I shouldn’t, I won’t punish myself, I’ll just get back on track again the next day. If you, like me, have children you know this is all doubly hard and more of a challenge. I have decided that my kids can all stand to have a healthier New Year as well!
Other Resolutions I am making this year:
Take Risks… I have to learn to take chances on those things that scare me. After all, nothing ventured, nothing gained!
Write more… I haven’t been writing enough for myself. I will devote at least 2 days a week to my own writing.
Declutter my home… Ugh… Our small rental is bursting at the seams and I really need to do something about it. I intend to throw away 5-10 things away a day (or recycle when appropriate) and to fill at least 1 garbage bag every week until we have been decluttered. We have pens without tops, broken toy pieces, old scribbled on note cards, magazines, etc. The kids have toys and games that can all be donated.
And that’s it. It’s not a lot but I don’t want to create more than I can handle, even though I have lots more I can improve upon. We need to remember that the idea of the Resolution is to create something achievable. And let’s STOP MAKING EXCUSES!
I’d love to know what some of your resolutions are!