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Healthy Eating : Shelby Shelby

Effective New Years Resolutions

A new year prompts us all to look forward and set goals for the next year. These goals often center around improving our health.While we start off the new year with great intentions of eating well and exercising more, it is easy to fall off the wagon if we don’t make effective goals. Take a moment today to rewrite your New Years Resolution using the SMART template.

The in SMART stands for specific: A specific goal tells youwhen, what, where, why, and how the goal will be achieved. For example, instead of a vague goal of eating healthier, make a specific goal that describes how you will eat healthier. A great healthy eating goal may look like this, “I will eat one serving of vegetables at lunch and dinner.” This is specific and tells you exactly how healthy eating will be achieved.

The M in SMART stands for measurable: A great goal can be measured to help you track your progress. For instance, aSMART exercise goal may be, “I will go for a 20 minute walk on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.” This is specific and measurable. To measure this goal, you might write a checkmark in your calendar on each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday thatyou take a 20 minute walk

The A in SMART stands for attainable: An attainable goal is a challenge, but not a burden. Making your goal attainable is important to keep up your motivation after the new year.Achieving your attainable goals makes you want to keep making healthy changes! To be sure your goal is attainable, check if you have the resources needed to achieve the goal. For example, while making an attainable exercise goal you might ask these questions: How may days in my week can I commit 30 minutes to exercise? What exercise can I do with the time I have available? What type of exercise does my budget support? After asking these questions, write your goal.

The R in SMART stands for relevant: Keep your end goal in mind when creating your SMART goals. If your end goal is to eat less added sugar, a relevant SMART goal may focus on decreasing your soda or dessert intake.

The T in SMART stands for timely: Long term goals are a greatway to focus your efforts, but they are also easy to stall or put off. Short term goals ranging for 1-2 weeks often keep our attention and are easier to commit to. A great way to make timely goals is to make new goals each week. At the beginning of the week, decide what your SMART goal will be. At the end of the week, reevaluate the goal. Do you want to continue with this goal, make it more challenging, or choose a more relevant goal? Commit to your new goal for one more week and repeat. This frequent goal setting will keep you engaged in making healthy changes.

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