New Year, New You! How to Set Attainable New Year's Resolutions

It's that time of year again!  It's almost the new year and a great time to set new goals or resolutions.  As you may know, New Year's resolutions that focus on health and wellness are wildly popular.  But they are also very hard to keep!  So before we get into ideas for some healthy resolutions, let's talk about the best way to set a goal.

Smart Goals
When you set a goal, it is important to be as specific as possible.  A good way to do this is to make a SMART goal.  SMART goals are specific, measurable, attainable (or realistic), relevant, and time-bound.  What is this so important?  You are more likely to reach a SMART goal than a goal that is not well defined.

Let's go over some specific areas you may want to focus on for a healthier you in the New Year!
 
Be More Active!
 
Physical activity is a great way to improve your health, reduce stress and increase energy levels!  Physical activity can be anything from jogging to weight lifting to taking the stairs instead of the elevator.  It is suggested that you try to get a half an hour of physical activity at least 5 days a week.  An example of a SMART physical activity goal is to power walk for thirty minutes on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
 
Eat More Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are yummy, low calorie foods.  These are high in water and fiber to help keep you full and contain nutrients to help fight disease and keep you healthy.  You should aim for five serving of fruits and vegetables every day.  An example of a SMART goal is to meet your five servings of fruits and vegetables at least three days a week.  Why only three days?  You need to make sure it is a goal you can reach!  Fit your goal to what makes sense for YOU!
 
Eat Breakfast
Eating a balanced breakfast is a proven way to reach and maintain a healthy weight.  It will also help you stay full and focused until lunch.  An example of a SMART goal is to eat a balanced breakfast four days a week.  Need some ideas for a healthy breakfast, check out these recipes for breakfast!
 
Get Enough Sleep
Getting enough sleep is important if you want to stay healthy!  For most people, this means 7-8 hours of sleep a night.  Enough sleep helps to lose and maintain weight, manage stress, and do your best during the day.  An idea of a SMART goal is to go to bed by 10 p.m. five days a week.
 
These are just some healthy ideas to think about for the New Year.  But there are many others!  No matter what healthy goal you decide to take on in the New Year, be sure to make it a SMART goal.  What is your New Year's SMART resolution?
 

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This institution is an equal opportunity provider. This material was funded by USDA's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program – SNAP. The University of Maryland Extension will not discriminate against any person because of race, age, sex, color, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, religion, ancestry or national origin, marital status, genetic information, political affiliation, and gender identity or expression. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) provides nutrition assistance to people with low income. It can help you buy nutritious foods for a better diet. To find out more about Maryland’s Food Supplement Program (SNAP), contact the Maryland Department of Human Resources at 1-800-332-6347 or apply online at https://mydhrbenefits.dhr.state.md.us/.
© Eat Smart, Be Fit Maryland!Maira Gall