Good intentions

Have you noticed how many programmes, adverts and how much noise about dieting there is out there. More than usual I think (or so it seems), friends commented to me the other day how they had also noticed it. Does it make you feel more under pressure? Especially if you are struggling to keep up with all the good intentions.

I have one friend who only made it a few days on dry January, probably because the pressure to stick to it and the constant reminders of what she couldn’t have made her want it more. When an innocent offer of a glass of wine and a catch up was made, she took it, without thinking, and then realised she wasn’t ‘supposed’ to.

I am not sure why January is the designated month for starting your fitness and healthy eating, it’s something we should be doing every day/week/month, because setting a start date would then imply an end date – but that’s not how healthy living works.

The key to keeping to a realistic and healthy lifestyle is to make it fit your real life, so putting everything on hold for one month means it’s inevitable you’ll struggle at some point.

Make healthy a habit – it will take at least 21 days before it’s really a habit, but that is a manageable amount of time to focus on. Once the habit is formed, it should be easier to maintain. So for 21 days – plan your gym sessions, prep your meals and snacks, try to avoid alcohol (or stick to one or two drinks once a week) and unhealthy processed foods. You may not make it 100% perfect, but no one is, so just do as much as you can.

Hopefully after 21 days, you will feel the benefits and that’s what will make it stick. And by that point, it will be February and we won’t have all those ads on 24/7.