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Health Justice CT Blog

Changing the “Resolutions Game”

New Year's resolutions written on pieces of paper and stuck to the tableSitting around with the family during the holiday, I dropped this elephant in the room and said, “Tis the season to renew yourself.”

I listened to my family as they react.

My sister in all her vigor said, “I am not playing that game this year.”

Some people use resolutions as a way to mentally hold themselves accountable as they look forward into the new year, while the better half of adults choose to succumb to past shortcomings and just say, “no more games.”

Each January, everyone, including my family members get a new start. They set New Year resolutions but on average only about 20% who make resolutions are successful.

Why do I care so much about everyone’s resolutions? Simply put: I have a vision of a healthier and fit nation.  As a public health advocate and personal trainer, I know that there is work to be done to get there. I acknowledge the various systems components that are involved in reaching health equality, but I believe individuals making better health choices are how we can get there.

Following the holiday season with rich foods, family and stress, people generally make resolutions, and they usually break down to one of three groups: weight loss/exercise, economic change, and quitting smoking. Believe it or not, but addressing these issues at an individual basis will help address inequities in health as a whole.

So this year, lets change the game. Let’s make it a game that we are certain to win. Consider this as your resolution; it will be mine as well.

Here are helpful tips, provided by yours truly, to achieve your goal of increased weight loss, more energy, fat loss, lower cholesterol or even the ability to run a mile without feeling like ‘Fat Albert’ is sitting on your chest.

Wellness and Fitness Tips to Win the “Resolution Games”:

1. Devise a well thought out one to two sentence statement that describes the goal and the route to reach said goal. Make this your personal thesis statement. If I do this <insert realistic action> then I will achieve this  <insert realistic goal>.

2. Start this game with 2-4 players. Doing this as a team always helps the cause. Accountability is a fantastic motivator and friendly competition may help you push through the tough patches.

3. Schedule a question and answer appointment with your primary care giver. Fake a cold and then drill them. It’s their job. Call it preventive care. President Obama will approve.

4. Bargain shop. This may seem like an off topic tactic however one of the major hurdles in resolution achievement are ‘Money Pits’. Financial burden can translate to the quickest downfall of any well thought out resolution.

5. Use either a smart phone or old fashion calendar on the refrigerator to set benchmark dates. Here is the best part, unless your goal is saving money, do not under any      circumstances set a hard number to your goal. Progress is still progress. Setting a hard fitness goal is another sure fire way to end a well thought resolution.

If you have your resolution statement prepared and ready to go, please leave it in the comments section. The “trainer” and “teacher” in me says I will check-in with you in a few months to ensure we’re still on track together.  Let’s make a community of accountable, healthy individuals.


About Raye Mutcherson

Raye J. Mutcherson II, Ph.D. is genetic researcher, public health advocate, teacher, and soon-to-be clinical research nurse. Connect with Raye on twitter. Learn more about Raye here.

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