Now is the best time for resolutions; take your September Pledge!
By David Martin, President and CEO of VeinInnovations
Well, it’s that time of year again. Time to deck the halls, lay out some stockings, and start thinking about New Year’s Resolutions – wait. Unless you’re living your life by K-Mart’s insane timetable, you’re not thinking about the holidays yet. But should you be?
The holiday season seems to be ever expanding as retailers race to collect as many consumer dollars as they can. It’s frustrating (and downright disturbing) to see Christmas advertised in sunny September. Still, there are a few good reasons to consider the holidays this early in the year. (Despite what K-Mart would have you believe, it has nothing to do with putting gifts on layaway.)
The average American puts on 1 to 2 pounds a year during the holidays. It may seem like a small amount, but for most of us the weight hangs around long after we’ve put the Christmas decorations away. Even when we don’t gain weight, we eat and drink more calories than at any other time of year. From Thanksgiving to New Year’s, we celebrate with beloved family members, cherishing time spent together. The allure of family, a cup of eggnog, and the frightful weather outside means we also exercise less than at any time of year.
Regardless, we have New Year’s Resolutions to atone for whatever minor gluttony we’ve indulged in. But our resolutions tend to fade quickly. Expansive lists and overly ambitious goals cause 92 percent of us to give up on our resolutions before spring. Before 2015 puts this year out to pasture, it’s time to kick start our well-being with healthy goals we can complete. Are you ready to sign on for the September Pledge?
September is a great month to restart incorporating vigorous healthy habits into your lifestyle. The weather is cooling down, routines are back to normal, and we’re well ahead of the holidays. Part of the reason New Year’s Resolutions fail to transform into habits is that we anticipate rapid change. Habits take a while to form – some recent research suggests it takes around 66 days.
So start working towards your goals slowly. Pick a (reasonable and small) healthy habit or two you’d like to incorporate into your life. A few recommendations: a walk after dinner, drinking 64 ounces of water a day, having one to three vegetarian dinners a week, or setting an end-of-screentime and start-of-bedtime ritual. (A cornucopia of flavorful and nutrient rich veggies are back in season this month, so vegetarian dinners might be the most doable!)
If you start making positive changes now, your good habits should be cemented by the holiday season. You might even be able to convince family to take a long walk after Thanksgiving dinner!