Well, here we are. About to head into the first full week of a new year, and a new decade. Welcome to the roaring ‘20s! Have you made any New Year’s Resolutions? According to CNN about 40% of us make one or more resolutions each year. Some to save money, some to lose weight, some to … Well … the list is pretty much endless.

Out of the 40% that make a resolution or two, less than 45% of us actually fulfill them. Here are a few tips on how to make resolutions that you might actually accomplish.

First, make it specific. Rather than resolving simply to lose weight, resolve to be more active. Or to eat just a little bit better. Simply going on a starvation diet won’t last long. One of my friends has resolved to lose 20 pounds in 2020, and she’s doing it the smart way; one step, one month at a time. By the end of the year she’ll be amazed at how much healthier her whole lifestyle is.

Second, make it possible. Sure, we’d all like to be as fit and trim as our favorite TV and Movie stars but let’s be honest, they’ve almost always got personal trainers for their workouts and professional meal preparers to keep them on track. If looking and feeling more fit is the goal, resolve to exercise three to five times a week. Start easily, then let the process build up on its own.

Third, and I think you’ll like this one, allow yourself to fail but set yourself up for success. Let’s say you resolved to work out three times a week and did great for the first three weeks, then you had a home emergency you had to deal with. Don’t beat yourself up that you didn’t make all three workouts, just take care of business and jump right back into the routine you had started. An occasional lapse – with recovery – is no big deal in the long run.

Fourth, know yourself. If the idea of riding in the Hotter’N Hell Hundred is something you never even want to contemplate, buying a brand-new bicycle isn’t going to change that. But if you love getting outside and enjoying the fresh air, just head to Lucy Park or jump onto the Circle Trail and go for a walk. Maybe your thing is lifting weights or getting involved in a group workout activity at a local gym. It’s more than you were doing and a definite step in the right direction. Pick something you actually enjoy doing and go do it.

Fifth, switch things up every now and then. Most serious athletes have different routines for different times of the year. One focuses on the core training they need to compete in their chosen sport, the other compliments it in the off season. Switching things up will help keep you motivated over the long run.

It’s a new year, a new decade, a new chance to make some new choices in your day to day routine that can enhance the rest of your life.

As Henry Ford said, “Whether you think you can, or think you can’t – you’re right.”

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