The Resolutionists have invaded the YMCA once again! Its interesting to observe Y members fighting for the parking spot closest to the entrance to then go work out. History demonstrates that ease in finding a spot will occur within 30 days. According to statistics, fewer than half of all Americans (45%) make resolutions. Unfortunately, most resolutions are too drastic. Im going to become a whole new person in 2014. Im going to lose 35 pounds, stop smoking, work out every day, stop the sodas, etc.
Unfortunately, fewer than 8% succeed. Why? Because lifelong habits cannot be broken cold turkey or with sudden changes.
Whats the solution? In the â€˜80s I was the king of carbohydrates because I unwittingly thought the authorities at the USDA offered sound advice. Consume more than 60% of your calories from high-density grains, cereals, pasta, and rice, avoid fats, etc. Even though I worked out 1-2 hours daily, I gained a few pounds, had to take daily naps, was bloated and had frequent headaches. But I was following scientifically proven recommendations. WRONG! They were never tested!
It wasn't until I read Dr. Sears book The Zone that I realized I needed to make some big changes. Perhaps you're like me and don't like any, especially to your diet. It would probably have been easier to change my religion. Did I dive into the Zone 100%? No, my dietary solution evolved, slowly and sustainability.
Here are a few suggestions to help you with your Zone evolution:
1) Once or twice a week have a breakfast of lean protein and a few carbs, not pancakes or French toast and pay attention to how you feel. Simple, fast and easy recipes are found at zonediet.com/Recipes/Breakfast.
2) Consume smaller, more frequent meals. Have a balanced mid-morning and afternoon snack but not a doughnut or candy bar. Try one of Dr. Sears food products, or heres a list of snack ideas - zonediet.com/Recipes/Snacks
3) Order a chicken Cesar salad with your next thin-crust pizza. You're supposed to take one-half of the pizza home or share with others.
4) Be sure to have a protein chaser with your next cocktail. Low-fat cheese, chicken wings, turkey jerky, smoked salmon, or deli roll-ups are examples.
5) Consume a few more vegetables and one less processed food item daily. Frozen vegetables are fine. Try the Green Giant Steamers.
6) Drink one can of naturally flavored sparking water daily in place of your soft drink.
7) Did you know there's a correlation between prolonged sitting and reduced life expectancy? Stand up, stretch, and move around every 30 minutes. Im not suggesting a 45-minute session of office yoga. Also, while you're up, focus your eyesight on an object in the distance. This helps relieve computer eyestrain.
8) Supplement with a high-quality omega 3s and polyphenols. There are too many benefits to list here on the importance of both. Go to zonediet.com/omega-3-fish-oils.
9) Relax and let go for just 3-5 minutes daily. How? Focus on your breathing. Just notice the rhythmic inhalation and exhalation. Gently close your eyes, be still, be aware and continue to follow your breath for a moment.
Theres no need to break another resolution. Instead, commit yourself to evolving. Small, simple and easy adjustments over time create a lifestyle that will reward you with a longer, healthier life.