It has become traditional to start the year with a better health plan or recover from the holiday calories. Many people at this time of the year try to organize intricate plans to develop exercises and diet plans that can put a professional athlete or model to shame. However, some resolutions end up in failure by the end of the first two weeks because it may all be just too overwhelmingly stressful to carry out. In spite of this, there is hope for anyone who desires to make lasting changes. Here’s what to keep in mind as you go about your plans:

  1. Start from the bottom. Developing your foundations can help improve the longevity of your exercise and eating plan. For example, a regular 20-30 minute walking plan 3-4 times a week is a much more doable plan than running 4-5kms for 3-4 times a week. Allow your body to gradually build confidence in tackling increasingly intensive activities to prevent anxiety and discouragement. Same goes for strength training, aim to start off doing easy versions of a push-up, squat or lunges before trying out complicated plyometric moves which may injure you early on in the process.
  2. Never neglect the essentials. Eating more multi-colored vegetables per meal and grabbing at least one fruit a day can help your body be healthier in many ways. Eating greens is also the foundation of a healthy diet and most nutritionists will include this in their eating plans.
  3. Set up reminders. The key to develop new healthy habits is to set up reminders in order to set your mind in “go-mode” and execute newly desired healthy routines. For example, set an exercise reminder with instructions like packing your gym bag in advance and then leave it by the door so you won’t forget it when you're in a hurry. Likewise, you can also install posters or articles on the numerous benefits of organic vegetables in your refrigerator so you never forget to add more greens to your plate. You can also post motivational sports quotes in your computer wallpaper to motivate you to continue your training routine and never give up.
  4. Ask for help. Sometimes you need external forces to set you on the right direction and keep you on track. Hiring a personal trainer or even just asking your buddy to join you on regular workout sessions is a big boost on workout adherence in the long run. Moreover, if you’re the kind of person who gets motivated in a group setting, joining a running or walking club may just be your thing.
  5. Out with the bad. You won’t be able to create new habits if your old ones keep getting in the way. One example is watching too much TV or surfing the net way too much at the end of the day may deprive you from rest and recovery. Doing so can discourage you from waking up early or setting a certain time to do your workout. For food, it would be hard to store more healthy veggies and fruits if your refrigerator is filled with chips, pastries and alcohol.

Most of these reminders are about control and discipline. It all starts from you taking action for a brighter, healthier 2020. Good luck!